The South

by Paul H. Yarbrough (May 2023)

Road Side-Summer Light,
William Dunlap, 1996


The South

Upon a hill the view in time;
A lunge from heart through sweat and rhyme.
Man joins the plow with tandem mule;
Forged through sweat and sinew fuel.
___All eyes reach the portended plain

The sun comes up upon the day.
With brightened eyes sighting hues far away.
All love the land God gave to them.
Drawing like milk, words from a hymn.
___To nurture nigh and from the breast.

Fields, streams; measured in time but near.
Fowl aloft; perch awash; framed dancing deer.
Creatures made from the crown on high,
Each apportions his range to die.
___A gift from God a treasured spot to live.

It is the land we meld to faith,
Driving stock ceaselessly around the laithe.
Each man must affix his due work.
Always eventful, never to shirk.
___Share man’s home of the world below.

It is the site God gave in hand.
The pearl of dwelling, we so love this land.
From far places folks here abound,
And to the end they shall be sound.
___They are as one, the one as now,

Units of steel, of stone, now but strange,
Never home for thine, but a quest of change.
Those borrowed tool-tempters for here,
The plenty of earth, draws them near.
___Never to pledge or yield, cotton and corn.

The Blueridge mountains heavenly sent,
To agrarians’ hearts so deeply bent.
Love of valleys, of peaks, all green,
Reaching up to toward heaven’s scene.
___Souls who live for land’s own treasure.

Virginia, queen’s own throne her helm,
Flowed below to her fruitful realm.
Bear all the land over her graves,
Stanzas of folk written in staves.
___Carolinas meet the court of Georgia.

The land is full for all who see.
Honor Alabama, praise Tennessee.
The gate to the waters opens free.
Sweet ground, rich lives, Mississippi.
___Wherever God has put His touch.

Kentucky thoroughbreds lancing.
Across the fields darting, daring, dancing;
Like deeply darkly azure glass.
Abound around bright blue grass.
___Those long lines stream upon a star.

Cross the river, view all the land,
Arkansas, Louisiana, smile grand.
Broad bluebonnets bright Texas blue,
Striking spring flowers’ charming hue.
___Spread across the flatland their home is found

The sun rises on its brave son,
Brightly tiding toward each ear upon.
Terrestrial folk bound to farm,
Never masking their femmes of charm.
___That splendid speech from tempered mouth,
___From all who suckle from breast of South



Old River Realm

I have pondered that russet-stained surge of impulsion to its reach;
Spanning across and spreading apart the terrestrial divide.
It pours its thrust down and down only to a sea, a gulf.
It beckons to St. Louis, Memphis, Vicksburg, Natchez;
It heralded the gates in the crescent Novum Aurelium.
Men charted, men rowed, men fought, loved it.
This beauty, this giant, both brute and mistress,
It accorded life, and took of the same and in its penetration,
Toward service as a master not as a servant-hire.
The sun up on one side at dawn and down the other in cycle.
As a child, its stream as unflawed glass,
But traveling to its home where splendor holds its heart;
It meanders like a serpent, watching all those who ate from, and suckled it.
Its name, the majestic call of masculine seed, while
Straddling sands and wolfing settling muddy worth.
Oh, barge of wealth oh living flesh who navigate,
Who fetches cotton, peat, iron and brick.
It opens its breast to the sea, melding its face.
God quarried a gorge for mobile men burning water’s life.
Its banks scale above the flows of all the distant passes of man.
Its mouth rejects to its gullet the entering deep sea,
While throat vomits the earth of the rich covering land.
Travelers’ scenes of churning wheels roiling a changing chestnut main,
Up and down the force seen by all in splendid power;
Foretelling an entry over planter and crofter domains,
The river has special soul, and a life, fortune across, beyond.
The river dies not, it lives, its eternity from God’s hand;
Driving, pushing, working, dividing its length in the forever.
The great rush of fishes, gators and fowl know only such worth;
That none will post against its power, but will live by its truth.
Old river realm.



The Road Leads …

Highways and roads take all to where
The end of the road can never be.
Winding, straight, and mottled some,
And yet the best of them can’t make us free.

We start from a place where we stand,
Though seldom a thought about our end.
Sometimes dark, windswept and long,
In front, a road that will yet begin.

We seek a trip of rich allure,
Though cursed and scornful, a forlorn path.
While absent love is shrieking,
Miles of furtive, and alien wrath.

Countless trips are burden weighed,
Lighted blessings obscured by a goal.
We seek a rogue claim of time;
Then find we have lost our hallowed soul.

Do we know a lonely road back?
Ample troubles yet down that bleak road.
Deceiving all to come forth;
Though scant aware of our tarnished load.
Our trip is lost, and now we search.
A spiritual trip by faith we comb.
Turning back over the course,
The road we want, is the one for home.



I Love Old Dixie

I love that old refrain. Of place
That wreathes with eternal song;
That suckles those whose love is
Of the South.
Oh, Dixie land

Where the deep-rooted ages
Are begot to memory in such view.
“Away, away” its chorus cries,
And cries its name,
Oh, Dixie land

Where God placed pastoral grips
Of His children enriched in spirit;
Heeding masculine pleas with code,
And all same, toil for His will.
Oh, Dixie land

Existing from the flow of water
That clears or browns from
The reaches of the mountains,
Unto its deltas wide.
Oh, Dixie land

It brings rich dreams to us.
Those men of soil and life for
Their ladies strong of heart and mind;
Whose feminine manners reach out,
Oh, Dixie land

Though Yankee hymns, craven shameless
Lyrics cry for blood to flood the land;
And bury the blissful times
Of those whose home was sacred.
Oh, Dixie land

Its knights brave and dashing;
All did climb those bloody walls,
And waged and sang the final song,
To eternity; yes,
Oh, Dixie land

It is a love, a love and love,
That takes my mind to heights
Before unknown but to God;
And stirs my thoughts.
Oh, Dixie land

It lets me sleep with fertile dreams
Of the people and their world;
Such a place claims Injun Batter,
And Buckwheat cakes, too.
Oh, Dixie land

It can cry, while its tears softly run.
From folk: set to work, raised by prayer;
And strong of mind and spine, and
Always their souls to be lifted up.
Oh, Dixie land

Of haranguing Yankees’ jealousies
My love will not be slaked;
That love but grows protecting itself,
While we stood; now stand, against such evil bent.
Oh, Dixie land

Oh Lord I love the life down wherein
It breathes from unlike chests.
But all and all molded as Southern,
And never, never will we annul.
Oh, Dixie land

It flies its flag within its heart.
And hears that Rebel’s cry—brave shout,
In spite of those who hate
This valiant land of love and hope.
Oh, Dixie land

I love old Dixie. My home.
Love holds the well of dreams; wherefore
All mystic visions are special,
And are in God’s eyes, ascended splendor.
Oh, Dixie land.


Table of Contents


Paul H. Yarbrough has written for The Blue State Conservative, NOQ, The Daily Caller, American Thinker, The Abbeville Institute, Lew Rockwell, and more. He is the author of 4 novels: Mississippi Cotton, A Mississippi Whisper, Thy Brother’s Blood, and The Yeller Rose of Texas, in addition to many short stories and poems.

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