Jan 142011

by Marty Silverthorne

Every pothole in this road I knew as mudhole.

Turn right and then a sharp left at the Dead End

sign on Mulberry. There has always been an old

bitch dog chained to a tree in front of Aunt Essie’s;

the sooner rises and growls as I creep by.

At the bottom of Haughton Street, Manning’s

Garage is boarded up; Granddaddy sold off his half

believing no business should be bound by blood.

I wander up Hwy 125 beyond Lovers’ Lane where

Mama and Daddy courted.  In the light of

the Philco they found my name; Marty Robbins

singing, never felt more like singing the blues.

Now I bear off at Poplar Point, slow for Whitley’s

Bridge where Granddaddy tied brush behind his

Model A to stir up dust so his soon-to-be father-in-law

could not see him smuggling sugar for shine.

Idling under pines by the vacant home place, I watch

a heron lift up in humid air over the sooner bitch

scavenging for food. Family ghosts retire to shade;

I want for kerosene lamp and radio’s gospel. Sure

as my spirit rises from a liquor still, this is home.