Suzanne Rhodenbaugh

Selected Works

Southern roots, sundry hurts, hells and losses, to home again.
Poems that move from The South to a wider world and witness.
Includes "Rudy and John" (first publ. in Ascent, on work with the United Mine Workers);"One Heart's Canon" (first publ. in The American Scholar, on poetry I love); "Illegitimacy and Stigma: Living with the Burn" (first publ. in Michigan Quarterly Review, on unwed motherhood and adoption).
Edited Non-fiction
The Civil War diary of a Georgia girl in Louisiana.

Lick of Sense

Early Red Bride

I was born baldly red, fed maraschino cherries
and strawberries real Florida strawberries
red to the tip and half a hand big I got
Red Eye swimming at the lake, ate Red Hots
at the movies Saturday afternoons oh I wore
a red hibiscus in my hair and in a halter dress
did jitterbug under strung lanterns

of the schoolyard. Under the turning mirrored
globe of the ballroom, in my red
velvet sheath dress I slow-danced,
and so married, still in my teens, and rubies
hung in my long-pierced ears.

(First published in Chester H. Jones Foundation National Poetry Competition Winners 1989.)