Perhaps the Oak Ridge Boys said it best because nothing
good’s ever come from taking shots from men in Adidas.
Tequila just ferments the brackish water from my blood
until my accent is nothing but a wet dream and I cannot
say my mother didn’t warn me about this. Didn’t warn me
about the gaggles of men flying South from Maine, New
Hampshire; about their summer homes drowning in bolts
of silk azaleas; about their love of open tabs and open
seasons. They see denim, imagine me bent over a Farmer’s
Almanac, pose me alongside a Model 1912 shotgun until
my knees lock, stay locked at a rest stop outside of Mobile.
My name becomes nothing but folklore huffed between
the traveling man’s dirty mouth and the cigar smoke
circling plays at a Patriots game, so I cut my blonde hair,
rifle through my mother’s paint cans, fashion the severed
strands into a brush. I write my name on blockades in black
paint, deface I59 overpasses—become one of many swamp
legends used to deter young women from the highway.


Note:  Title  is borrowed from The Oak Ridge Boys’ song of the same name.


Shelby Clark