Archives for posts with tag: Southern States

r_kyllo
TELL ME A STORY
by Robert Penn Warren

Long ago, in Kentucky, I, a boy, stood
By a dirt road, in first dark, and heard
The great geese hoot northward.

I could not see them, there being no moon
And the stars sparse. I heard them.

I did not know what was happening in my heart.

It was the season before the elderberry blooms,
Therefore they were going north.

The sound was passing northward.

SOURCE: “Tell Me a Story” appears in The Collected Poems of Robert Penn Warren (1998), available at Amazon.com.

IMAGE: “Northbound,” watercolor by R. Kyllo. Prints available at fineartamerica.com.

Image

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Robert Penn Warren (1905-1989) — a poet-novelist-essayist-editor-critic — is the only person to win a Pulitzer Prize for both fiction and poetry, and considered the most decorated American author of all time. He received the 1947 Pulitzer Prize for his novel All the King’s Men and the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1958 and 1979. From 1944-1945, Warren served as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress. His other honors and awards include Presidential Medal of Freedom (1980), MacArthur Fellowship (1981), designation as first U.S. Poet Laureate (1986), and National Medal of Arts (1987).

Image“Louisiana in September was like an obscene phone call from nature. The air–moist, sultry, secretive, and far from fresh–felt as if it were being exhaled into one’s face. Sometimes it even sounded like heavy breathing. Honeysuckle, swamp flowers, magnolia, and the mystery smell of the river scented the atmosphere, amplifying the intrusion of organic sleaze. It was aphrodisiac and repressive, soft and violent at the same time. In New Orleans, in the French Quarter, miles from the barking lungs of alligators, the air maintained this quality of breath, although here it acquired a tinge of metallic halitosis, due to fumes expelled by tourist buses, trucks delivering Dixie beer, and, on Decatur Street, a mass-transit motor coach named Desire.”  

TOM ROBBINS, Jitterbug Perfume

Find Tom Robbins‘ 1990 novel Jitterbug Perfume at Amazon.com.