Upper Mississippi Mile 225 – November 11, 2012
The mystery lock that wouldn’t respond on the radio, watching the Army Corps cranes build rock walls, the magic hour before sunset, escaping a car ferry in the darkness, searching moonlit islands for a sandbar, a leaping fish trying to slap me in the face, a tug’s spotlight turning night into day from two miles away, St. Louis glowing on the horizon.
I could tell a lot of stories from today, but they all wash away behind a tattered confederate flag hanging from an old pole along the Missouri bank.
I wanted it to be grits or sweet tea. I wanted it to be a southern accent or fried catfish. I wanted it to be live oaks or spanish moss. I wanted it to be anything but the stars and bars.
But there it was, pulled tight in the wind, tattered and ripped, but still full with hate and sharp as a gunshot.
Welcome to the South.