Guest Post – A Summer Night in Jackson

The first thing that should jump out to you is “Guest Post” in the title. As I transition this blog into an online literary journal, I’m going to be accepting two kinds of submissions.

I’m hoping to get enough submissions through Duotrope to create a Spring and Winter Issue of Come and Go Literary each year. You can find more details on that in my submission guidelines.

The second way to submit, if you’re interested in spreading your work across WordPress quickly, or if you wish to simply submit previously published (blog posts, etc.) work, is via guest post. You’ll be able to find these posts with my own in whatever genre you send me.

So with all that said, Ana Daksina, whose work can be found on my blog here, has submitted another poem for you all. Her poetry is definitely on the long side, but her sense of control over every single line guide you through it with ease. I hope you all enjoy!

A Summer Night in Jackson

By Ana Daksina

The moon was a great shining orb
That southern evening in
As I prepared to start my car
A journey to begin

To visit some acquaintances
With whom I close had grown
I lived out in the suburbs and
My friends they lived downtown

In a little neighborhood
Which time had near forgot
Weeds grew lush and verdant
In every vacant lot

And those which were inhabited
Bore houses had been built
When kitchen gardens fed the folk
Who slept beneath a quilt

Made by hand their women of
When children did their share
And neighbors weren’t so niggardly
With warm brotherly care

Such houses every spring
Have all their windows taken in
And at the start of autumn
They are put back up again

The cranky heater situated
One front room within
But little does to cut the chill
Their tiny bedrooms in

But there’s a type of quiet
On the bumpy lane outside
That’s hard to find in modern days
It pays to take the ride

As if it were a time machine
Which brought you to this place
Having succeeded somehow
To one hundred years erase

No telephone my friends possessed
So necessarily
I had to go to their front door
To find if there they be

And though upon this evening
They sure enough were out
I spent some moments gazing
That small neighborhood about

Nestled in the bucket seat
My little roadster of
Gazing at the shining moon
Dreaming dreams of love

Across the street a Doberman
Made his evening round
Up from the insect kingdom rose
A symphony of sound

Permeate with melody
The warm and balmy air
Treasuring this moment
I lingered seated there

When up the road behind me
Two local children came
A sight more picturesque than they
No chronic’ler might name

One girl was thin and lythe and tall
Her friend a little chunkier
One had her hair in little braids
The other shorter locks prefer

Both were dressed for summer
That torrid region in
Shorts and t’s and flip flops
Rested light on ebony skin

As they passed my window
The first girl took a look
Then after but a few more steps
She turned, those steps retook

And came back to my window
To ask me if I was okay
Before I reassured her
And she turned to go away

Leaving me to contemplate
This wonderful example of
Truly selfless, undemanding
Uncondit’ional love

This child was destined from the day
Of impoverished birth
Caught inside a culture
Ignorant of her worth

To live her limited life through
Bagging groceries
Or at some shop attempting
Snooty women to appease

And I am of the master race
But yet she stopped to see
If there were any little thing
That she could do for me

The Doberman — a Southern dog
Ceased his evening walk
So full of eager happiness
He looked like he could talk

And when the two got close enough
To his expected mark
He stood quite still across the street
Let out one little bark

From other evenings well he knew
The children in this neighborhood
Had of his canine brethren
Exper’ienced little good

And sure enough those two young girls
Panicked obligingly
Which for that Doberman the finest
Entertainment be

They jumped, then turned, and then they grasped
Each other hard the shoulders by
Each screamed into the other’s face
Then turned again to try

That grinning doggie to escape
In good short order from
But found that in the screaming
They tangled had become

The larger, therefore slower, girl
Leaned first to left and then to right
Assessing her trajectory
For most efficient flight

Her slender friend, however
Seemed to be perfectly clear
In her conviction she should be
Immed’iately away from here

Unable to run left or right
She took the center way
Finding my little roadster
Exactly in her way

And in a manner that I yet
Marvel to relate
This little Mississippi girl
Didn’t hesitate

Those thin legs stretched out long
Yessir, those legs they stretched out wide
Into a bounding, elegant
And fleet African stride

One foot on my engine
One foot over my head
One on my trunk, and she was gone
Somewhere far ahead

So swift and strong her purpose that
Those flip flops on her feet
Had stayed right where they’d landed
In the middle of that street

The Doberman could not have known
How precious Summer shoes can be
To someone who never a spare
Penny of money see

But being pretty sure they would
Return those shoes recover to
He stayed stock still as he’d begun
Keeping them in view

And sure enough, here the girls came
Though kept their distance from
That inward laughing Doberman
Their problem had become

Gone was the striding Nike
Gone the wild African Queen
And back the little Mississippi girl
She had earlier been

When as they passed my car again
She saw me smile at her
Unsure of what she ought from
That unused-to smile infer

She gazed into my eyes and then
She sadly shook her head
And “Lady, I’m so sorry”
Is what she fin’ally said

“Oh, don’t be sorry,” I replied
“That was magnificent!
I think for running track and field
You certainly were meant!”

To my surprise I watched both girls
A fit of giggles melt into
I guessed that where they went to school
Track and field were not in view

They went a little further
Together stood the curb upon
Gazing at those flip flops
Egging one another on

In the meanwhile the Doberman
Had not one muscle moved
He waited till the thinner girl
Commenced, as it behooved

Her mission in that moment do,
To step into the street
Then with a second single bark
Did he that effort greet

Gratified expectations
More entertainment for
Immediately came to him
When those girls screamed some more

And leaped right back upon the curb
Which no protection be
If that Doberman should decide
This something other than play be

By now I’d seen about enough
‘Twas time to intervene
I placed my Northern confidence
That dog and children in between

Rescuing the flip flops
That to this girl so much meant
The dog for silence realized
A strong personal bent

And that young girl so touchingly
And humbly grateful be
More grateful than most businessman
Another million see

And as I drove away that night
A smile upon my mouth
I knew I’d glimpsed the best and worst
Of the modern South

 

To read more of Ana’s work, check out her blog Timeless Classics – Poetry by Ana Daksina. You will not be disappointed.

Submissions

If you’re interested in submitting your own poetry or work of any other genre to Come and Go Literary, please see my submission guidelines for more details — especially if you’re interested in submitting for the upcoming Winter Issue.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. preetyvarma says:

    Very nice and well written. Dobermans
    are energetic clubbed with tremendous strength and stamina. Loyal, Tolerant and affectionate are the adjectives goes perfectly well with them. They are the outstanding guard dog but also a gentle family companion

    Liked by 1 person

    1. All depends on the trainer. They’re one of the smartest breeds!

      Like

  2. calmkate says:

    very well written 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. calmkate says:

        my pleasure 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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