I was born in Sumter, South Carolina while Daddy was stationed at Shaw, though I consider Tennessee home. Uprooted and moved cross-country many times during childhood, summers were spent in Smyrna at Mema and Daddy Tom’s, plus sleep overs at Aunt Ada’s (say A-der). I grew up on fried chicken, bbq, bacon, pinto beans, chow-chow, and fried pies. Nene (Mema’s mama) always crumbled her cornbread in a china cup and ate it like cereal. Daddy Tom was Smyrna’s judge for years, and everyone knows everyone, so don’t go airing your drawers out. Manners are so important, how you speak to others, and offer concern and respect, that you can spot a Yankee right away. I was raised on yes, sir, and no, ma’am, and that’s just how it is. If it wasn’t, well there was surely a switch with my name on it out in the yard. My Cherokee grandmother, Mama Red, was too sweet for that, and she’s the only saint I know. A Southern woman is the strongest spirit, so don’t go kicking her like the dog you hate or a half-dead mule—cause fool, you just won’t.Read more
The Dead Mule School
Online since 1996. "No good Southern fiction, poetry, essays, cornbread, coon mule jumping competition, swamp dance or pig pickin' is complete without a dead mule..."