Southern Status Anxiety
Adrian Blevins

Southern Status Anxiety needed better bras. She needed stronger wire. She imagined herself standing in front of a big mirror in, say, Macy’s downtown seeing how superior the uplift could be. Southern Status Anxiety also needed more mascara or better mascara like mascara made with maybe eucalyptus oil and charcoal or ground onyx or whatever—Southern Status Anxiety didn’t exactly know how the mascara-makers made their mascara and did not actually care since mostly she just needed someone such as a surgeon to staple the loose skin on her face to the back of her neck and the top of her poor skull. Southern Status Anxiety needed therefore a hat, if not a wig! It needed to be made of linen, for Southern Status Anxiety was hot. She was panting. She was tanning and panting. She was hot and tanning and pretty much literally burning to death on her deck while needing also a better bathing suit and more cellulose in her gut to avert the hunger until such time as a husband could be located out there in the galaxy where bad news seemed to whirl and eddy to such an awful extent that Southern Status Anxiety just needed a man and a deer he’d shoot or a rabid hog because what she really was needing right about now was a kill. And a cocktail party with lots and lots of vodka and bourbon and drink umbrellas and gin. And a swimming pool to go sit by and French Sauvignon Blanc and fur for later when it would become winter and there would be a snow storm and a Christmas tree would be necessary not to even mention the various wreaths and extra large Jesus globes to hang from the windows with Jesus’s handsome white Jesus face and his even more handsome white Jesus sadness and white Jesus penis under the robes that she would never see because God, after all, was God.

Adrian Blevins is the author of the full-length poetry collections Appalachians Run Amok, winner of the Wilder Prize, Live from the Homesick Jamboree, and The Brass Girl Brouhaha; the chapbooks Bloodline and The Man Who Went Out for Cigarettes; and the co-edited essay collection Walk Till the Dogs Get Mean: Meditations on the Forbidden from Contemporary Appalachia. She is the recipient of many awards including a Kate Tufts Discovery Award for The Brass Girl Brouhaha and a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award, among others. She teaches at Colby College in Waterville, Maine.