The mansion where Gone with the Wind was written sits up on blocks
like a trailer, underpinnings exposed, like a trailer, trucked down a road,
relocated from one county to another that also can’t afford its restoration,
a green curtain of vines drawing over the decay. What should stay?
Trailers will not biodegrade (though they depreciate), are left standing
in place, the older ones with the new, accruing, spreading like the pines over
the soil too exploited for any more cotton. Slash pines, trashy trees,
you could call them. At least these are not plantations as they once were.
And skirts cover trailers’ plumbing. Are they the structures with ugly
foundations now? On the first property a family was allowed to own,
the original trailer is circled by generations to follow, in growth rings
of vinyl siding. It’s a sight. To come to see. This, as scenery.
Rose McLarney‘s collections of poems are Forage and Its Day Being Gone, winner of the National Poetry Series prize, and The Always Broken Plates of Mountains. She is co-editor of A Literary Field Guide to Southern Appalachia. Rose has been awarded fellowships by the MacDowell Colony and the Bread Loaf and Sewanee Writers’ Conferences, among others. She earned her MFA from Warren Wilson College’s MFA Program for Writers. Currently, she is associate professor of creative writing at Auburn University and co-editor-in-chief of the Southern Humanities Review.