About Me

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Nancy Simpson's LIVING ABOVE THE FROST LINE, New and Selected Poems was published by Carolina Wren Press (N.C. Laureate Series, 2010.) She is the author of ACROSS WATER and NIGHT STUDENT, State Street Press, still available on WWW at Alibris and Books Again. Her poems have been published in Southern Poetry Review, Prairie Schooner, The Georgia Review and other literary magazines. "Carolina Bluebirds" was published in THE POETS GUIDE TO THE BIRDS, Anhinga Press). "Grass" was reprinted in the 50th Anniversary Issue of Southern Poetry Review: DON'T LEAVE HUNGRY ( U.of Arkansas Press.) Seven poems were reprinted in the textbook, SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN POETRY,(McFarland.) Two poems were published in SOLO CAFE, Two more poems were published in SOLO NOVO."In the Nantahala Gorge" was published in Pisgah Review. "Studying Winter" was reprinted in Pirene's Fountain Anthology and "The Collection" in Collecting Life Anthology. Most recently, Southern Poetry Review Edited by James Smith, published "Our Great Depression," and The Southern Poetry Anthology Vol. VII: NORTH CAROLINA,Edited by William Wright, reprinted "Leaving in the Dead of Winter."

Sunday, December 14, 2008


All those times, all those bridges, 
Georgia to Florida, sand
in his shoes, red clay in his pocket,
I wonder what passed through my father's mind.

He never said much about hurricanes
or corn, except that you pull it not pick it
One summer in Georgia I promised to pull
all the corn in ten acres he planted.

Indolent girl, red clay in my pocket,
I remember a movie in east Atlanta.
Prisoners built a bridge across water,
building, building the whole movie.

I was too young to know why
they blew it all to pieces in the end.
This morning a half drowned woman wakes me.
I open the window.  She has come many miles

across water.  Her memories are mine.
She gives me one starfish, one mango
and reminds me how I climbed the tree
when the flood came, after the hurricane.

I give her anemone for starfish.
I give her a mountain, the safest place to be.



Richard said...

Nancy, Thanks for the wonderful write-up on my class. I hope it does some good.

Nancy Simpson said...

You're welcome, Richard. I know that class and how it works. It always generates lots of new stories. I have my fingers crossed that you will have a full house. You know that you will be teaching in the new studio, don't you?. It's perfect.

Tipper said...

Nancy-this is one of my very favorite of yours-I just love it!

Nancy Simpson said...

Thanks, Tipper.

"I give her a mountain."

Anonymous said...

Like Tipper I really like that poem. It has a clever ending! Glenda Barrett

Nancy Simpson said...

Thanks Glenda Barrett, I appreciate your comment about the end of the poem. I have felt safe here in the mountains since I first came here. But, I must tell you, that last line of that poem was inspired by a personal conversation I had with Kathryn Stripling Byer way back in the 1970's. On the phone, I was telling her how I felt safe here and she said her mother way down in south Georgia heard a radio or tv announcer say that Cullowhee was the safest place to be should a nuclear disaster occur. Then I changed some words in the poem and put that line last.

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