The White Poet-Historian Finds Another Nice White Lady
Mary Wheeler wrote down steamboat era songs before
they were lost in time. It’s the best source the poet-historian
found. Did both morally reckon with this line, this bold-faced
flaw pressed to lie down? A line to walk, bogged down
to a path to elsewhere. It’s a levee. Or clothes. Line up
the lower decks and shores. Cut, spliced, rolled. A hymn
and holler calls. A line to sever, what lines horizon, is sung.
Heather Dobbins is a native of Memphis, Tennessee. She is the author of two poetry collections, In the Low Houses (2014) and River Mouth (2017), both from Kelsay Press. Her flash fiction, poems, and poetry reviews have been published in Beloit Poetry Journal, Book of Matches, The Rumpus, Channel, and Women’s Studies Quarterly, among others. For over twenty years, she has worked as an educator (Kindergarten through college) in Oakland, California; Memphis, Tennessee; and currently, Fort Smith, Arkansas. Please see heatherdobbins.net for more.