T. K. Tolbert: Miss Geneva (an essay)

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My Southern Legitimacy Statement: I was born in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Southern Ohio, where driving forty five minutes one way puts you in West Virginia and thirty five minutes the otherRead more

Claire Fullerton: How Does One Become a Writer

Southern Legitimacy Statement: I am a proud Southerner from Memphis, Tennessee, who now lives in Southern California, which makes me all the more Southern, for I am now a Southern ambassador. As a bona fide representativeRead more

Luisa Reyes: “Thank You” — Our Memoir Writing First Place Winner

My Southern Statement is as follows:  Luisa Kay Reyes was born in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Roll Tide! Her mother wanted to be sure she was born in the South, so even though she was living inRead more

Andy Fogle: “Edward” First Place Winner in April Memoir Contest (it’s a tie!)

Southern Legitimacy Statement (a story in its own right) I was born Paul Andrew Fogle in Norfolk VA and grew up in Virginia Beach, and as far back as I know all but 2 threadsRead more

Terry Barr: Fit-Pitching in the Age of Trump

Southern Legitimacy Statement: As a boy raised in Alabama, I was raised to believe that all people were equal, that George Wallace was a lunatic, that Alabama football should always best Auburn football, and thatRead more

CL Bledsoe: Feeding the Fish

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Another in our Series of Memoirs by Mule editor CL Bledsoe. Read on, my mule readers … read on. Feeding the Fish My Dad woke up, and woke me, before the sun, which is somethingRead more

Tom Sheehan: The Day I Grew Up

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 Southern Legitimacy Statement:  I have appeared in your publication, spent a recent vacation in NC, read in NC, worked in Tennessee for a short time. The Day I Grew Up I was fighting it all theRead more

Eve Lyons: Don’t Mess With Texas

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Southern Legitimacy Statement: I grew up in San Antonio, Texas. Eve’s poetry can be found here on the Dead Mule. Don’t Mess With Texas In sixth grade I started middle school.  I was terrified to goRead more

CL Bledsoe: Waiting for the Miracle

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Another in our bi-weekly Series of Memoirs from Mule editor CL Bledsoe. His southern bona fides run deep, just read on… Waiting for the Miracle My home town was like this: (                                                                              ). Wynne hadRead more

Claire Fullerton: Whistlin’ Dixie

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Southern Legitimacy Statement I come from Memphis. I claim ownership to her nuances, which I wear like a badge of honor. And it’s not so much that I come from Memphis as I come fromRead more

Michelle Brooks: All Women Are Bunnies

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Southern Legitimacy Statement: As for my southern legitimacy statement, here it goes. I grew up in Mineral Wells, Texas where my mother sold rattlesnakes that had been frozen and subsequently fashioned into paperweights. Nothing could put a smile on her face like a big bag of vipers! Also, my aunt and uncle were first cousins, something I was not supposed to mention even though it was not an uncommon occurrence in my hometown. I have more southern legitimacy, but I’ll stop for now.Read more

Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow by Sara Dacus with Lindsey Bell and James Wiser

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Southern Legitimacy Statement: I was born and have lived the entirety of my life in Searcy, Arkansas. I believe in southern hospitality, and I believe there is no greater entertainment than watching fast horses run in a circle while wearing a ridiculously large hat.Read more

Claire Fullerton: A Southern Voice

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Southern Legitimacy Statement I come from Memphis. I claim ownership to her nuances, which I wear like a badge of honor. And it’s not so much that I come from Memphis as I come fromRead more

Cortney Cameron: Dads and Guitars

Southern Legitimacy Statement: I have lived in North Carolina since the turn of the new millennium. I eat Cajun fried chicken for at least one meal daily, have received live diddles in the mail, and secretlyRead more

Rite of Passage by Michelle Ivy Davis

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Southern Legitimacy Statement: As someone who has almost always lived in the South (Southern Maryland, Southern India, Southern Florida and Southern California) I have these wonderful memories:

Our yard filled with lightening bugs, their twinkle lighting up the night. My sister and I caught them in jar, had my mother poke holes in the lid, and took them to our room to watch until we fell asleep. The next morning the magic was gone and they were just bugs. We let them go, only to repeat the process again that night.

I remember the twang and then bang of the screen door as we went in and out of the house a hundred times on summer days.

I always wrote thank you notes and still do. There’s something satisfying about a pretty little card and words of gratitude.

I remember when standing in front of a fan really did cool you off, even though the air coming from it was as hot as that the room. It was the humidity evaporating off my skin, y’all. And we opened the windows in the morning, only to close them and pull the curtains later to hold the “cooler” air in and keep the hot afternoon sun out.

Pulling off a honeysuckle blossom and sucking out the honey was heaven.

And the calming beauty of Spanish moss swaying in live oak trees? Only in the South.Read more

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