She sang “Farther Along”

The voice soft and low,

Pans and dishes clinking an accompaniment.

The gospel music radio program

Interrupted by static, obituaries and birthdays

Was a 7 AM ritual as important

As the bacon and eggs, biscuits and gravy

Made for the family that gathered

 In that warm sanctuary.













Flour fingerprints on the radio dial,

A jar of bacon grease,

A percolator of strong coffee

Wafting a wonderful aroma

Enhancing the smell of bacon and biscuit.

Elbows on the table with

Hands clasped against a

Bowed forehead, 

Dad said grace.















No one said much,

There were biscuits to be buttered,

Coffee to be creamed and sugared,

 Two boys to be admonished

Fighting for the last piece of bacon.

The Chuck Wagon Gang sang

“A Beautiful Life” as sweet

Dixie Dew syrup drizzled

Across half a buttered biscuit.
















Straight back chairs scraped

Away from the table,

Soon only Mama remained,

Sipping her coffee,

Left with the dirty dishes and the

Static of the local news to be

Followed by Pat Boone

Singing “A Wonderful Time Up There”.



















Her voice soft and low

Accompanied by guitar and fiddle

Daughter Julie sang “Farther Along”.

I bowed my head in the church pew,

Said grace and cried as

I heard my mother’s voice

Singing in the kitchen.


Ó J. Harold Thurmond

July 7, 2008


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