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“I have found that anything that comes out of the South is going to be called grotesque by the Northern reader, unless it is grotesque, in which case it is going to be called realistic.”
— Flannery O’Connor
from her 1960 essay, Some Aspects of the Grotesque in Southern Fiction.

farmhouse window

 

Let us all consider the Mule in southern fiction
and bless them every one.

What to do with a dead mule…

If you have a dead mule, do not suffer it to pollute the atmosphere by drawing it away to the woods, or any other out-of-the-way place, but remove it a short distance only from your premises, and put down four or five loads of muck or sods, place the carcass thereon and sprinkle it over with quick lime, and cover immediately with sods or mould sufficient to make, with what had been previously added, twenty good wagon-loads; and you will have within twelve months a pile of manure worth $20 for any crop you choose to put it on.

If any dogs manifests too great a regard for the enclosed carcass, shoot them on the spot.
–adapted from a 1895 treatise on manure

OR read it. This Mule ain’t dead, yall.

We’ve got more coming online soon, give us some time to dig through the database.


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Southern Fiction, Poetry, Essays & More Since 1995
ISSN 1535-8488 :: Published in The South, USA
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The Assemblagist - Valerie MacEwan .