The Back Roads of Georgia

Day 64 of 100 Happy Days

We all got in the car

-the kids and I;

he was in Baltimore to see the baby.

We left Florida after 8,

past painted signs calling out summertime peaches, and

the boys pointed out a beaver dam built up in a swamp outside of Folkston, right there,

right next to the road.

Tufts of cotton caught in roadside grasses blown loose from harvested fields looked like snow.

After Tifton-

purple acres of cabbages and then-

the kids favorite-

rows of what looked like tiny trees, a miniature forest, that

turned out to be broccoli.

“Albany is halfway” Erin said.

Pecan plantations, groves of women-

nut trees always look feminine to me, strong

torsos with arms reaching, ballet positions,

fingers extending the line of the wrist,

thighs strong enough to stand steady while bearing down a birth roar.

It’s hilly here.

Pie spice colors: cloves, allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon.

The towns have glitter garland holiday swirls over the streets.

Turned around, wrong turn, right turn into

farmland, green fields framed by wooded windbreaks.

Starling murmurations, pulsing clouds of birds

sweeping against the blueness of this autumn sky.

The border town, southern gothic, hanging moss and

enormous porches. Tree lined avenues with manners, even just passing by.


is not meant for making great time, this trip

was for taking the time that it takes.


Day 64 of 100 Happy Days

Day 64 of 100 Happy Days

10 Things, Without the Metaphor #2

Stinson Park Jacksonville Florida

Number one, an old man, heavyset, in a sleeveless sweatshirt, standing on his stoop at 6:15 am, looking at the blue light of his phone, not out to get the newspaper, standing there maybe out of habit.

Number two, the busy birds, too many to count, rebounding high pitched tweet-chirp-tweet-chirps.

Number three, the dew on the chair has made the back of my legs wet and the sweat on my hand sticks me to the paper as I write. It’s humid today.

Number four, it’s humid, I said that already, but seriously, it’s November 2 at 6:45 and there are streaks of salty sweat running from my temple and more between my breasts and I just felt a trickle in the little dip of my lower back.

Because Number five, I did go running this morning, just short intervals for .75 of a mile. I walked for the rest of the way.

Number six: a crow calls in 3’s, “caw, caw, caw”.

Number seven: I hear dripping water, soft, intermittent pats, but I see the pond is still. I don’t think it’s going to rain.

Number eight, caw, caw, caw.

Number nine and it’s not too early to hear the whoosh of traffic half a mile away. Commuters I’ll only join for carpool, not to the office. A vehicle without a muffler accelerates hard.

Ten is the memory that it took a chain of changes to make this morning being outside to listen and write at 6:50 on the new Mondayest day of the week. I’m glad I walked bravely into this light.

Stinson Park in Ortega, Jacksonville, Florida

Stinson Park in Ortega, Jacksonville, Florida