End of ADS-L Digest - 2 Apr 1997 to 3 Apr 1997
Subject: ADS-L Digest - 3 Apr 1997 to 4 Apr 1997
There are 5 messages totalling 144 lines in this issue.
Topics of the day:
1. For A. Rosa: dialect poem
2. Fred Cassidy
3. for-to (2)
4. Rule of Thumb
Date: Fri, 4 Apr 1997 10:00:30 EST
From: simon[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]CVAX.IPFW.INDIANA.EDU
Subject: For A. Rosa: dialect poem
THis isn't the poem I mentioned. That's coming. But here's
another which I love and might be suitable for you.
AN ORAL HISTORY OF
THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
Max Garland _The Postal Confessions_ University of Massachusetts Press:
Sometimes I wake up with my hillbilly voice.
I don't know why. Maybe a dream took me back.
The catalpas wilting in the heat.
The dust-devils walking the dry field.
Maybe the river was trying to shine
through the silt and accumulated years.
But when my head cleared and sleep ended,
there was only the twang of home left over,
like stubble in a milo field.
Sometimes I wake with the voice of my mother,
every syllable stretched like sorghum
or cold honey. The vowels washing over
the consonants without mercy. Every word
elongated, drenched in deliberation.
The name of my sister for instance, *Pam,*
becomes *Pay-yum;* takes two syllables,
one to release the word, the other
to call her back again.
Or sometimes I wake with my schooled tongue.
The tongue that moved away. All the *i's* and *y's*
precisely spoken, buttoned in their uniforms,
the cap brims set at the proper angles
of ambition. A voice clipped
and regulated, rising and falling
like the boots of a mercenary, drawn
deeper and deeper into the provinces,
hunting the stragglers of childhood down.
(the asterisks are meant to represent italics)
Max is from Kentucky. This collection, _The Postal Confessions_,
won the Juniper Prize from U of Mass Press.
assistant professor, linguistics and english
indiana university purdue university
simon[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]cvax.ipfw.indiana.edu
(this was fair use, right?)