Shake the Dust

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Feb 23 2014

Dear world, today I found a deer leg.

Dear world beyond the Delta,

I woke up today and found a severed deer leg in my front yard.

At first I thought it was a stick but after inching a few steps closer realized it was definitely a deer leg. I laughed about it mostly because I didn’t know what else to do.

A deer leg. In my yard. 5 feet from my front door.

Y’all, my life is so Arkansas. So much so that my deepest Arkansan realization I can share beyond laughing at a deer leg is that I sort of love Wal-Mart, or at least don’t have an aversion to it like my colleagues from other parts of the country.

This is how serious my love is: How I imagine other people feel about starting their day with the newspaper and a fresh cup of coffee is how I feel about sitting alone in my car on a sunny day in the Wal-Mart parking lot. It’s peaceful, it’s solitary, and it lets me check out what’s going on in the world around me. I adore it. I just find watching members of my small community shuffle into their weekly routine of grocery shopping, picking up prescriptions, and overspending on “As seen on TV” products strangely comforting.  There’s little sense of urgency and people sometimes leave their doors unlocked and their keys in the ignition. Everything’s so steady, so predictable.  I honestly believe that I’ve probably peered out my windshield at the hunter who killed the deer in my yard in the Wal-Mart parking lot. I proclaim that because, as I said before, my life is just so damn Arkansas.

Non-Delta world, I like Wal-Mart and I like Arkansas. I like Arkansas for the creative ways people find to incorporate a Razorback into their home décor, the ways good news or tragedy is experienced as a community instead of in isolation, and the flat farm land that is easy to run on.

There are so many things I like about Arkansas, so many things I love about Arkansas. Of course I’d be lying if I said there weren’t also many things I didn’t like or love about Arkansas but for tonight all I want to celebrate is that I have literally no earthly idea how a severed deer leg ended up on my front yard.

Peace, love, and deer legs from the Arkansas Delta,


One Response

  1. I love this thoroughly.

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Arkansas, y'all.

Mississippi Delta
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