GEORGIA Posts

The Stories that Bind Us

We are holed up here at the house on the lake awaiting Irma.  The patio furniture has been tied down. The boat tied up. The cars have been moved to an open clearing. Water has been put into zip-lock bags and bathtubs.

And here it is 9-11 and the most inarticulate president to ever serve this nation is hosting a memorial service at the Pentagon.

The Pentagon.

I can’t see it without thinking of my friends Hubert and Lillian Champion. read more

Lock up those Climate Deniers

I received a text from my daughter around last night. “Minus the humidity, I feel like I might have an appreciation for your childhood without AC,” she wrote.

Perhaps you are unaware that Oregon has been under an extreme heat advisory?

Typically, I, a former Georgia girl, might scoff at the notion of an extreme heat advisory in Oregon as anything over 74 degrees. I’ve always felt that if Oregonians lived under the extreme conditions most Southerners do, they, too, might take to calling on the name of Jesus with more regularity. But what can you expect from a people who have grown up in a land void of cockroaches, water moccasins, brush harbor meetings replete with hellfire preachers and Holy Ghost rattlers? Not to mention, Lester Maddox, Roy Barnes and Sonny Perdue. read more

Some Place East of Fort Benning

IMG_6151

There is this red dirt drive just off the highway, some place east of Fort Benning, Georgia. If you are speeding or lost in dreams yet unrealized, you’ll surely miss it. You might not even notice the sign declaring Floria’s Folk Art Gallery. Or the circle-board painted blue declaring Jesus is Soon to Return. Drive by too quickly and you’ll miss entirely the Letter from Hell. read more

About Hillbilly Elegy & Those Who Champion Us

Photo by Sue Counts

Photo by Sue Counts

I’ve been reading the book that everyone was talking about six months ago – Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance. It has been touted as an insightful book about Appalachia and more specifically about the people who voted Donald Trump into office.

It’s not really either of those things. When Vance says he’s from Appalachia what he means is that his people are from Kentucky, which is unquestionably Appalachia. But he grew up in Ohio, which to people who are Appalachian, not Appalachia. read more

Stories Behind the Story

22E65752-EC95-455B-96BE-5E99EE60AE21

There was that moment, (you knew there would be one, didn’t you?), when Kimberly Faith Hickman, the insightful and masterful director of MOTHER OF RAIN, took me by the hand after the show and said, “You have to hear this story.”

This was on Saturday, following the Talk Back session, a time when audience members were given opportunity to ask questions of the actors, the director, or Paul Pierce, who adapted the novel for the stage, or of me. I’d never really had a sit-down with the actors or with the director, so I had no idea that sometime during rehearsals that Hickman had shared with the actors the story of Andrea Yates, the Texas mother who drowned her five children. read more