HomeSouthern VoiceAll My Grandmothers are Dead

All My Grandmothers are Dead

by Mia Pearson-Loomis

I’m told to be grateful for a picket fence,
As if an eagle could be grateful for iron bars.
Four bedrooms and an intimate relationship with fear,
Two bathrooms and a passive wish to die,
I am the heiress of a thousand stories,
Like an ocean to which all rivers lead.
Like water, the sun draws me up from the crossroads
And scatters me in stinging sheets of rain.
Addiction, anorexia, a stark aversion to trust
Rests in my parents’ bradford pear
Like an omen I’m old enough to be afraid of
But too young to understand.
All my grandmothers are dead, you see,
But I’ve never attended a funeral.


Mia Pearson-Loomis is an emerging poet living in Knoxville, Tennessee, where she was born and raised. She is descended from a long line of Tennesseans, dating back to the 1800s. Her work draws connections between a present identity and familial past that at first glance appear to be in direct opposition. In addition to telling her own story, she tells the story of modern-day Tennessee via freeform odes to the people she has met throughout her almost 30 years of living in Knoxville. She has self-published two e-books and has had poetry featured in Deep South Magazine and The Pigeon Parade Quarterly. You can keep up with her on her website.

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