Novel Review

I don’t read a lot of novels, except historical ones occasionally. Over two days earlier this month I read a really good one based on the recommendation of several friends. The genre is listed variously as Women’s Fiction, Southern Fiction, Coming of Age, Family Life, and Survival! Probably all of those apply to “Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens.

I was a little puzzled by the title since I’m familiar with crawdads and I’ve never heard them sing. On Crooked Creek, we called them crawfish, but they are the same thing and they don’t sing. Nevertheless, it was a great read. I immediately wondered why the book had not become a movie, but I learned that one is in the works to be produced by Reese Witherspoon. 

The book follows a small girl growing up alone after being abandoned by her entire family. She grew up in the marshlands in North Carolina learning to take care of herself. She only attended school one day because she was laughed at by the other students when she could not spell. Her only friend, a young boy, took the time to teach her the alphabet and she taught herself to read. 

I’ll stop here before I tell you too much, but the story goes on until this little girl dies in her sixties. It has a very surprising ending. I recommend this award winning book if you like novels. 

Guest Poet

Lazy Part of Summer

IMG_7850

patches of queen anne’s lace

dance across fields of fescue

during the lazy part of summer,

their lacey white umbels

bobbling on spindly stems 

as they catch 

the dry august breeze  

stands of purple iron weed 

compliment sunflowers of yellow 

in the palm of summer’s hand,

unyielding on rigid stalks

as they thrive

in the grip of heat

hillsides of vibrant green

lose their emerald luster

over the passing of time,

their brilliance dulling

as they falter

under shortening days 

 

stream beds run dry

and intermittent pockets of water

lie in shallow languid pools,

inviting jesus bugs to walk 

above pinchered crawdads

that crawl across the flat rocky bottom

IMG_6359

the old iron railroad trestle

sits solidly on stilted legs

that rise skyward over the complacent stream,

time and life seem suspended 

as they slow to a crawl

during the lazy part of summer

“lazy part of summer” Written by: Sylvia L. Mattingly  August 10, 2018

IMG_7902