As promised…To SEP with apologies….


(Myrtle Beach, S.C .)

– to SEP, with apologies

No, not that state, the one, you know, of cheap salons
With last-season’s belle-dames, dour and prickly,
Patching through to their analysts on cell-phones
And building empires of big hair beneath dome-driers;
Nor that one in chronic rows of new and used-cars,
Like jujubes lined up in the sun, getting sticky
And smudged with the fingering doubts of consumers…

But the one, you know, of serene history,
Of green humidity shading blue in supreme swamp,
Where each tobacco shed became its own city,
Each coastal beach-head, a true/false dichotomy
Of vacant resorts and resorted principates;
Where manners defend a liturgy of good taste,
Thankfully lacking that practical Yankee stamp.

As visitors, we strived to take your beaches
Before surrendering at last by late day —
Constant storms, summering out, raced out to the sea,
Found themselves far more exciting than us
And so clung northward like condensation
To the coastline’s piney-sanded mugginess,
Making lush the fields of history’s plantation.

You were named for an English king whose currency
Was lost in the cloudy exchange of arms, lead, flint.
So civil and awful for the growing continent,
Your revolution made our fortune’s verdancy,
Though for democratic souls like mine, droll, complacent.
O my Carolina, thick with hurricane air,
I cannot visit you again – no, not anywhere.


  1. Southern Expat says

    Lovely. I am appeased.

  2. Rufus McCain says

    Nice. The ending has shades of "it did not give of bird or bush" methinks.

  3. Sepmeister,

    I am glad all is now well.

    Rufus My Main Man!

    That is a quite generous compliment!


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