Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

Reflections On Southern Comfort This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

By
   I grew up in the south,

had a big ol' southern family

and creaky Victorian house

with a shiny porch swing that papa made

of oak. Us women we'd sit out on it

on days when the sun was like the heat

from them blue fire torches

'cept it was never blue,

more like water. Not water just laying there

in pools, but like fallin' water

washin' stuff away. It's not really

even a color but just like a ripplin'.

We'd make lemonade not from real lemons

'cause all that squeezing of 'em -

well it was just too hot for that.

It's come from this tin, that was yella

an' had this lemon floatin' above

a fence that was kinda like the one out back that swung open

for papa an' the boys so's they could go out to the fields.

It was picketed an' white.

We'd sit 'n sip, cause mama said

"a lady always sips" an' the men would

walk by, smellin' like their very soul

was burnin' up, it was that hot!

They'd smell like when hair's on fire

but sadder. Our cubes of ice clinkin' together,

ramblin' little songs, real quiet, like someone'd

turned the volume down. The music in the movie

of men that we'd watch, walkin' from their fields.

And the steady creakin' of them metal chains

suspendin' us in the swing keepin' time to the sweat

drippin' down their faces.

Sometimes they'd come up close to ask "how ya'll doing?"

and ya know, I think about it now an'

they really only smelled like

work an' dirt an' brown grass. I think it was

my soul I smelled,

burnin' up like strands o' blond hair,

curlin' up on themselves, turnin' black, fallin' down an'

floatin' off somewhere. Specks o' dust that would

get in the men's eyes in fields that they'd wipe way

annoyed at it's bein' there but happy that

they got it out.




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






Post a Comment

Be the first to comment on this article!

bRealTime banner ad on the left side
Site Feedback