by Sandra Bounds
Mississippi is the voice of the Deep South.
Softly and sensuously,
she speaks with Southern drawl.
Listen with ears and hearts,
and “ya’ll” can hear her:
in the words of her writers,
Faulkner and Foote, Welty and Wright;
in the music of B. B. and Son,
Presley and Price and Pride;
in the song of her bird,
in the whisper of the river
that bears her name;
in the lap of waters
that caress the Gulf Coast;
in the purr of tractors that ready fields
for planting of beans, corn, cotton, and rice;
in the murmur of Spring’s warm winds
that tease dogwood and magnolia into bloom;
in the strength of her people
as they face devastation.
Let your spirit hear the voice of Mississippi
as she speaks with grace and warmth and hospitality.
Sandra Bounds was born in Mississippi and lives in Macon. She has a Master of Arts in English and has taught in both high school and community college. An active member of the Mississippi Poetry Society, she was its 2005 Poet of the Year, and the society published a chapbook of her poetry to honor that selection. She has won many awards in contests sponsored by the society and has been published in such journals as Art Gulf Coast, The Lyric, The Road Not Taken, Sharing, The Well-Tempered Sonnet and Westward Quarterly.