Mary Harwell Sayler
If you saw the woman I saw in Alabama,
you might call her house a shack, not
knowing the number and size of rooms
has turned her home into an unpainted
palace with a front porch overlooking
a field where she plants one row after
another with no old mule to assist her.
She has only herself to count on, row
after row, guiding a V-shaped plow in
front of her like a big metal breastbone.
Row after row, she upturns the moist
earth, wearing a black leather strap
slack around her neck to keep herself
in line after line, looking perfectly regal.
fiction poetry "fact" photography