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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A Natchez Childhood


Goodbye, Charlie

You know you've lived
too long
when you're still
alive after the trees
you planted have died
of old age.

The air is turning
and the leaves
the hurricane left
crumble underfoot
like distant memories.

The sidewalk
at Main and Commerce,
where Cee Tee, all
crossed eyes and paranoia,
combed his greasy hair.

The auditorium. Sy,
bent half in two
over a wheelbarrow
selling chewing gum and peanuts
His cowboy hat and skin,
black and lined
as a story.

Violins at night.

Nellie lost to the flames,
Dabney's beautiful eyes,
Leigh Ann's hands and
the bay gelding at the
county barn that
sixteenth summer.

Mud swirls in patterns
in the river, arrowheads
and pottery shift on
ancient sandbars,
disappear, appear again.

I thought I heard you
calling from the porch,
but it was just
the subtle thunder
of a passing storm.

by Elodie Pritchartt

*Photo of Sy, the candy man
courtesy William Stewart Collection, Historic Natchez Foundation

3 comments:

  1. There he is!

    ReplyDelete
  2. loved this!! so many memories and colorful people...one day mayb they will b talking about U !!!U r leaving your mark for sure !Blah Blah ... ME

    ReplyDelete
  3. Nice poem - it all brings back memories.

    ReplyDelete

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