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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."

Friday, June 19, 2009

Two Poems by Pat Workman

Many of our writers in the western Carolina mountains know Pat Workman. She is one of my favorite poets. I met her through North Carolina Writers Network West, and for a number of years we both attended the montly poetry critique group. She's a fine poet. Here are two of my favorite poems.

evenin song by Pat Workman

it was that time after supper
drippin dishes on tha drain board
tappin bug wings at tha screen
keepin time

she a-leanin
on tha weathered porch rail
dreamin her next song
keepin time
with a-moon glidin past midnight
...her blues notes chillin
tha fevered air

in tha porch swing
her momma a singin
keepin time
with tha chain’s gentle squeakin
her alto shape notes seekin
harmony with specters of her youth

two kinds of song
two kinds of longin
become one kind of comfort
keepin time
singn this life and tha past

Full Circle by Pat Workman

My thoughts rumble when thunder
vaults the Nantahala mountain coves;
my nostrils fill with the smell of sweat
soaked leather and the blowing rain
becomes a horse’s mane slapping
me back to range those salty trails
with the Mormon Sons of Daniel.

I must have been a Danite
with ten wives to cook and clean,
ten guns to fire in the name of God,
ten horses to guard my boundaries,
and ten hundred heirs
to insure my grip upon the land.

In this Appalachian lifetime,
I am a lone wife living with
a man who needed ten.
Now...I fire words
in the name of peace
and teach my sons
that we can never own
a single grain of sand.

previously published in LIGHTS IN THE MOUNTAINS
Stories, Essays and Poems by Writers Living in
and Inspired by the Southern Appalachian Mountains


Pat says she is a mountain climbing, rock turning, tree hugging native of Macon County, NC. After living in Ky, Fl, SC and GA, she and her husband, Dwain, retired to Hayesville, NC in 1996. She first joined North Carolina Writers' Network in 1998 after taking her first poetry class at the John C Campbell Folk School. Pat considers herself to be a late-blooming, erratically creative, Dyslexic Poet.

Pat was an X-Ray Technologist and doctor's assistant—1963 to1967. Through the years she continued to take college courses on the run while raising three sons and running two businesses. She and her husband owned and operated a retail business for 25 years in Helen, GA, featuring local arts and crafts, beautifully illustrated & and hard to find books, health foods and organic whole grain breads and cookies baked fresh daily.

She was a volunteer with Northeast GA Hospice, GMHI in Atlanta, the GA Dept. of Mental Health in Gainesville, a licensed counselor and Hypnotherapist—1973 to1996 as owner of the Mountain Learning Center in Helen, GA.

Her poems have been published in Main Street Rag, Independence Boulevard, Lights in the Mountains, four volumes of Freeing Jonah and the Marathon News Leader - Marathon, Texas.

Pat Workman has one of the most interesting blogs by an Appalachian poet and painter. I follow her blog. Take a look and
see I'm telling you the truth. http://pat-workman.blogspot.com/


Tipper said...

WOW Pat is a wonderful poet! I greatly enjoyed both of her poems you shared.

Nancy Simpson said...

Thanks Tipper. I knew you would like these poems.

Glenda C. Beall said...

Pat Workman is a wonder and a wonderful poet. She is smart in both ways of thinking, and has more talents than than ten normal people put together.
I love her work but literary and visual.

karenh said...

Pat's poetry is so musical. What a treat.

Pat Workman said...

Nancy, I have been up on the Blue Ridge Parkway taking pictures since last Sunday morning. I just got back home and wanted to thank you again for featuring me in this post. My children and grandchildren were so impressed to see me and my poetry up in lights, so to speak. My 13 year old grandson asked me if I was famous...haha. Needless to say, I was pleased and honored to have my moments of glory on your wonderful blog. You always inspire and support me, and the rest of your flock, at NCWNW. We are so lucky to have you. Big Hugs!

Nancy Simpson said...

Hi Pat, a number of people have told me thay enjoyed reading your poems on the site. Keep writing...and
give me a chance to post some more of your poems during your birth month.

Anonymous said...

Pat, just never stops. I have thought of her often, she was my first therapist, and she was the Dr. Phil of her time, she didn't just sit there and baby you, you had to work and look at yourself. That has about 25yrs ago. I've relied on her words many times over the yrs, but have lost touch, had no idea she was doing this. Outstanding Pat! Would love to talk with you.
Susan Threlkeld