I was born and raised in an extremely rural area of Southwest Georgia. It wasn’t easy being what I am compared to what passes for typical around here. My first cardinal sin was my complete indifference to football (which has, in all honesty, turned into loathing as Ive grown and found out how sexist the NFL is). This was followed by my lack of religion (football comes before Jesus in the South. Surprisingly) and compounded by the heavy metal I loved and the way I didn’t act like a fragile damsel in need of rescuing by a strong, brutish man driving a raised 4 x 4, gas guzzling truck. In fact, instead of wilting in the presence of masculinity, I threatened to kick a few ignorant, bigoted asses in my high school days when the natives made unwarranted jokes about friends of mine.
It’s no surprise that I wanted out of here as soon as possible. I dreamed of it. Planned it. Yearned for the day when I could see those plans come to fruition. I would run so fast the day I graduated high school the streets would burn in my wake.
It didn’t happen that way though.
I spent a lot of my time blaming my problems on where I was instead of realizing a lot of it had to do with who I was. I figured that out slowly and surely along the way, and eventually decided this was home. I can’t leave the Spanish Moss covered Live Oaks, the long summers perfect for drying laundry on a clothesline, my two acres of rural paradise…
The girl who mismatched Marilyn Manson shirts and thrift store polyester pants is perfectly content with her knees in the dirt growing vegetables in her garden or mowing the grass with a whiskey sour in one hand and a dog in her lap. If you were to tell my 16 year old self that she would find peace and, in all honesty, complete and utter joy in being followed around her yard in Climax, Georgia by a 4 pack of Indian Runner ducks, she’d tell you to go fuck yourself. But, that’s the way it is.
So, with the prompt “duck” I couldn’t resist showing off my feathered babies, weird as they may be. And hold the glazed duck dinner jokes. I could never eat a part of my family.