Carl Wade Thompson: The Prodigal (poetry)

Southern Legitimacy Statement:  I am a native-born Oklahoma poet who’s work is inspired by nature, class, and life experiences that were shaped by my Southern family. The poem is inspired by a recent family vacation to Gulf Shores, Alabama and how a person might try to escape their Southern upbringing, but must always come back.

The Prodigal

The Gulf looks endless.
Vast green waters stretch
like a curved mirror’s reflection,
until the sky and sea are indivisible.
Looking out at the beach,
raked white sand at my feet,
I know I am home,
a Southern son born in salt.
Night lays its star-patched quilt,
and the heavens appear up above,
my roots run deep through the shore,
and I know I can never leave.