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541 Wiley Parker Road
Jackson TN 38305

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Blog

Filtering by Category: Essays

Hello, Home

Mattanah DeWitt

When I was eight years old, my family moved to Friendship, Tennessee, a town with a population of about 650 people. Having lived in Des Moines, Iowa, for most of my life, the only appeal of moving south was that my mom had a cousin in the area. I remember my surprise that a place so small could feel so loud. September was the month we moved, and even though the trees shed their covering earlier than normal that year, it still felt warm.

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The Downtown Tavern: An Elegy

Gabe Hart

At the end of every school year, I have my students create a portfolio of different types of original poetry. I’d like to think I do it in order to foster their creativity, but it’s really because I’m too lazy to grade eighty-four final exams. Either way, it’s a win/win for all of us: they get to write sonnets and pretend that they’re actually writing their first rap hit, and I get to sit back and not grade bubbled-in answer documents. One poem they always struggle with is an elegy.

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Monument of Memories

Kevin Vailes

Why do we create monuments to the past? What is it about physical reminders—be they statues or plaques—that move us? Why do we feel the need to travel to the places of great historical events and walk the same ground? I am struck by the words of Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, the hero of Little Round Top at the Battle of Gettysburg: “In great deeds, something abides. On great fields, something stays.”

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#OurJacksonVote: The Runoff

Gabe Hart

Two or three times a week, I put my body through the ringer. For thirty minutes, I do exercises that a man approaching forty probably shouldn’t attempt. I throw my body to the ground and spring up as quickly as I can. I push a weighted plate across the floor. I crawl like a bear up and down mats made of rubber. After all that is finished, I put on boxing gloves and hit a heavy bag that sometimes feels as if it’s made of concrete. When I kick it, my foot and shin turn red and bruise. My shoulders and arms feel as if they’re weighted by stones.

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#OurJacksonVote: Dr. Jerry Woods

Guest Contributor

Hailing from the small town of Pinson, the city of Jackson was considered our metropolis. The vibrant downtown community was a far cry from the simple and wholesome country life of farmwork, church, school, and more farmwork. The coveted opportunity to go to “town” was a big deal. The long journey of a mere eleven miles up Highway 45 from Pinson was overshadowed by the thoughts of bright lights, department stores, food choices, and other amenities that were unavailable in Pinson.

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