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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."

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

"Digging" and "Looking Down Into a Ditch" - Two Poems By John Stone

DIGGING by John Stone

My son is following
a tree root to its source,
learning connections,
dirt and purpose
all at once.

He has attacked it before,
but from topside,
monkeying the limbs.

He shows me the branches
makes me believe
there are leaves on them
in some different season

when we must come back and look.

from the collection THE SMELL OF MATCHES
Louisiana State University Press


Watching the workmen dig a ditch
watching them lay in the pipe

for the waste and gasses
and liquids of our living

I think of the lost maps
of lost cities, their pipes
still moving off
in important directions

of people I knew
who are now in the serious dirt

of the ditches at Dachau

of my father.

It is hard
to keep remembering
across the ditches we have made
and covered over
with terrible earth-moving sound

how much of our dying
we must find ways not to need,
how much of what keeps us alive
is underground.

from the collection IN ALL THIS RAIN
Louisiana State University Press

John Stone was born Feb. 7, 1936 in Jackson, Mississippi and he died on November 6, 2008 at his home near Atlanta. He was four times honored as Georgia Writer of the year . A memorial poetry reading was held in his honor January 14, 2009 at Callanwolde Conservatory. During parts of the 1970s and 1980s John Stone served on the Callanwolde Poetry Committee.

He was the author of The Smell of Matches 1972, 1989 LSU Press, Where Water Begins, LSU Press 1998,In All this Rain 1980 LSU Press, Renaming the Streets, 1985 LSU Press, Music From Apartment 8: New and Selected Poems 2004 LSU Press. In 1990 Delacorte Press published In the Country of Hearts: Journeys in the Art of Medicine, (Essays). The book was reprinted by LSU Press in 1996.

Dr. John Stone was Professor Emeritus of Cardiology at Emory University in Atlanta. He also taught English Literature at Emory and at Oxford University in England.

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