Wednesday, September 16, 2009

m, i crooked letter (13)

m, i crooked letter...

southern serendipity
down in bassfield mississippi.
where i learned to live [oh bless my heart]
for breakfast.

the cloying smell of hogshead cheese,
pork chops, okra, black-eyed peas,
dirty rice & cornbread served
for breakfast.

the butt of jokes in the barnyard;
deaththrow-chased ‘cross the farmyard
by a vicious headless gospel bird
for breakfast.

humiliated by a mule
too stubborn for a child to rule
or ride across the pasture
before breakfast.

picking peas both night & day
when uncle robert had his way,
working up an apetite
for breakfast.

say nothing to your kinfolks
you can't stand your pa to know;
u will eat every trusting word
for breakfast.

big lies told on the porch at nights
of ghosts & haints & graveyard rites;
the stuff of indigestion
for breakfast.

midnight runs to the outhouse,
'cross the field from the main house,
evacuates my bloated bowels
for breakfast.

the morning after grandma died
i saw her standing side by side
with daddy's baby sister
fixing breakfast.

a small boy's taste of commonsense
served lavishly with recompense,
collard greens & ham hocks
for breakfast.

©Joseph McNair;2009