a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society
its tributary Powell, early named Pelisipi,
winding waters, by the Cherokee. I love
the evenings most, when my granddaughters
unwind, the house reflects zircons, mined
surface of river. Not my house, but my family,
my welcome, years past parting—shoals,
switchbacks, snaky coves. Again at table,
arms and necks sun warmed, I give my first
husband the lion’s share as his mother
instructed in my twenties. I serve and remove
his plate, refill his glass without resentment
or ire, the outlier who eddied away,
the red rover called to the other side.
Let me come over, I ask him, the rope
less taut between us—and, knot
by knot, he mends memory’s seine.
Together we sift rock and silt, the epic
flood’s devastation. Tonight brim and bluegill
are striking. He sets a lantern at the end
of the dock. Norris above, Melton Hill
below dam old levels against new spill,
release familiar schools I swim
with currents easing.
Linda Parsons is a poet, playwright, and editor. She is the reviews editor at Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel and has contributed to The Georgia Review, Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, Southern Poetry Review, The Chattahoochee Review, Shenandoah, and Ted Kooser’s syndicated column, American Life in Poetry, among other journals and anthologies. Her most recent poetry collection is This Shaky Earth, and her newest endeavor is writing for The Hammer Ensemble, the social justice wing of Flying Anvil Theatre in Knoxville, Tennessee.