full circle in the hundred acre wood

Stuckey’s Pecan Logs

big mouth Bass on a hook

sugar cane


Old South Pit BBQ

lightning bugs

did your cork bob?

cane syrup

cut your own switch

tomato gravy

i wouldn’t put wigglers on a hook

full immersion baptism

skate key

Tennessee Ernie Ford singing “Sixteen Tons”

polka records

am i going to have to take off my belt

prayer meeting

red eye gravy

black recliner chair

when blue-eyed tumor is a curse

he loved baseball and boxing

and she?

Erma ironed our clothes in in the carport outside

and rode in the back seat when Daddy took her home

sweet potato pie

someday when you have children you will understand (and you will be sorry, too)

Sweet Hour of Prayer

when Princess is a sarcastic insult

Ed Sullivan

Gun Smoke

hide and seek

crickets in the night

why don’t you love your mother

king of the hill

sandlot baseball

Adamo Lanes bowling

sucking juice from hibiscus flowers

if the circle is ever unbroken who will run screaming from the room first

black taffeta dress with little red flowers


why Mother not Mom not Mama not Mommy

sounds of the percolator making strong hot coffee

he was a person of routine


cane pole

Tarzan vines

does the Mother gene pass?

French Provencal furniture

linoleum floor

outboard motor

Minah bird

slam of wooden screen door at the fish camp

light wood knot

unapproved planting of Four O’Clocks

Training Union

metal taste of the piccolo

spit collecting in the flute


playing Paganini variations on wet keys of piano rolled out to middle of football field during agricultural fair

will anyone ever know the whole story?

hideous blue-green taffeta dress

does it matter?

wooden biscuit bowl under the sink

Cherry cream pie at his wake

no crying

no crying

no crying



9 thoughts on “Heat Lightning

  1. Elizabeth A says:

    Just about every single thing on this resonated with me — was it the familiarity and warmth? The south? The beautiful language that drew me in? I don’t know but it was all of these; I just love it.


  2. Florice says:

    Mom, mama, mommie – all sound warm, but when we said mother, it was said without warmth – cold, so cold, so dead, am I crying yet? Was I ever warm? Only with love. Love of a good husband, love of my sister Beth. Warm – finally.


  3. deanna says:

    Mm, you’re doing some very nice things here. As always. I’m enjoying catching up.


  4. Paula says:

    Wow, you stopped me in my tracks, as usual.


  5. Great poem! The list works. It works.


  6. Wally says:

    mouth watering
    brow furrowing
    tears without crying
    never crying
    now, crying


  7. Beth says:

    I forgot to mention Speed Writing. Thanks for teaching me. It helped me get a job to pay for college! Love you, big sister.


  8. Beth says:

    and learning to share with no fear I love you big brother


  9. I didn’t read this the first time through catching up after being away.
    I knew it would be something like this. Knew it would be a piece of your heart.
    you’ve moved me to that place
    thank you for sharing your healing heart


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