Looking West Over the Mississippi In Summer

Toy O’Ferrall

When she leaves you, move here
to Memphis, where everything
drains from east and west down
to one point, where everything
is still unsteady—fault lines,
humidity, and flood—where music sticks
better to tape. Feel the magnolias shift
under the pavement, the asphalt
giving way under the steady push
of roots, the heat making the air lean
left and right, bending the empty
warehouses down on Riverside.
Let the memory of her slip out
over the cracked ground, rise up
in the heat, and drift over the dirty river
covered in sun—a bright coal pressed
against the mouth of the city.
You will have to sweat her out,
but do it dancing, here,
where your song will carry—
the tiny diamond lifting and rising
over the record after it feels its way
down the grooved cut.
© 2007 University of North Carolina Greensboro
CURRENT ISSUE
PAST ISSUES
SUBMISSIONS
CONTEST
ABOUT THE GR



ABOUT THE AUTHOR.


TOY O’FERRALL is an Alabama native. She teaches composition and literature at UNC Greensboro, where she earned her MFA in writing and worked for ELT Press.

This poem received The Greensboro Review's 2005 Amon Liner Poetry Award.