Baptism, by Misty Skaggs

All the old men
from the Beartown
Church of God
call me Sissy.
There’s Ligey
and Whirley
and Johnny
and my Mamaw’s cousin,
who found Jesus
after he beat cancer
a cou­ple years back.

They’re work­ing Men
of God.
They reminisce
about their drink­ing days,
and trade around trucks,
and sto­ries about bad kids
and wors­en­ing eyesight.

When they think I’m eighteen,
they grin at the possibilities.
When they find out I’m thirty,
the grins get a lit­tle sad
and soft around the edges,
at the thought
of the waste
of a good pair
of breed­ing hips.

porchMisty Marie Rae Skag­gs, 31, was born and raised in East­ern Ken­tucky and feels a deep con­nec­tion to the Appalachi­an region, its peo­ple and lit­er­a­ture. She cur­rent­ly resides way out at the end of Bear Town Ridge Road in Elliott Coun­ty. Skag­gs’ poet­ry and prose have been fea­tured in lit­er­ary jour­nals such as New Madrid, Pine Moun­tain Sand & Grav­el, Lime­stone and Inscape and she has self-pub­lished two well received chap­books, avail­able by con­tact­ing the broke-ass author her­self — misty_​marie@​rocketmail.​com. When she isn’t writ­ing, Misty enjoys vol­un­teer­ing to “teach” writ­ing to angsty, hill­bil­ly high school kids as well as tak­ing long, woodsy walks with her dog Bosco and work­ing the yard sale circuit.


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