Typus Orbis Universalis

Typus Orbis Universalis


I’m a writer, editor, and teacher, and I enjoy connecting with readers and other writers. On November 1, 2017, I was commissioned Alabama's Poet Laureate, for a four-year term. I grew up in Arkansas and have lived for many years in Alabama, although I’ve also lived abroad, in England and Romania, and have traveled extensively in Ireland and Greece. I’ve written two collections of poems, "Little Wanderer" (2016) a collection of road and travel poems, and "Bottle Tree" (2010), which focuses on my experiences as a southern woman. I’ve also written "Tell the World You’re a Wildflower," a collection of loosely interwoven short stories in the voices of southern women and girls. I love to put together collections as well, and I edited "Working the Dirt: An Anthology of Southern Poets," and co-edited, with Wendy Reed, "All Out of Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality," and "Circling Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality," as well as "Belles’ Letters II: Contemporary Fiction by Alabama Women," co-edited with Don Noble. I’m currently working on a memoir-influenced book about Scott and Zelda biographer Sara Mayfield as well as a new collection of short stories.

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Below you'll find occasional blog posts, as the spirit moves me.

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Monday, February 21, 2011

Buy Hyacinths

A week or so after Valentine's Day and then after Easter are good times to buy hyacinths and other bulb plants on sale at your local grocery store. I scouted them out yesterday and went back today, where the woman in the floral section offered me three hyacinths for the price of one. They'll bring pleasure for a few days in the big pot on the patio, while I'm waiting for the ones I've planted in previous years to come up. Then I'll put them in the ground for next year, near the base of a tree so I know where to look for them.

Each year I remember the story my mother told me, and the poem that goes with it. When she was a little girl, her older sister recited a poem to her. She loved it and asked her sister to write it down for her. "No," said her sister, "I'll teach it to you so you can memorize it. Then you'll have it forever."

The poem gets attributed to various sources, but I don't usually see it with the last three lines, as my mother taught it to me--having remembered it all her life, thanks to her sister:

If thou of fortune be bereft
And in thy store there be but left
Two loaves, sell one
And with the dole
Buy hyacinths to feed the soul.
For well we know--
Tis not by bread alone
That man is fed.

1 comment:

  1. Love Ann's tikes . Found a farmer's journal there , published on august 3, 1850, a hundred years short of my illustrious birthday.