Attala County, Mississippi


Now Mississippi Hwy 411 started at the Baptist Church at McCool, Mississippi and ran off down through the woods until it got tired and finally turned into something else. I grew up in a big old farmhouse that sat right on the side of Mississippi Hwy 411. I wrote a little story about it once and it went something like this:


The Old Red Gravel Road

Somewhere there's an old red gravel road
that runs back into the hills. 
And the creeks cross it,
the trees grow along beside it.
Their limbs reach out so far that in places
the sun is almost hidden from view.
As I walk along this old road
I hear the wind move in the trees.
Somewhere a dog barks.
Up the hollow I hear a cowbell ring. 
As a young boy I walked this old road many times.
Why, I knew where every hill, curve, tree and
rock was along the way.
Even on the darkest of nights,
I always knew where I was in relation to home.

This old road has changed now.   
It has been "improved" beyond recognition. 
The creeks now run under the road in gray steel culverts. 
The "unnecessary" curves have straightened out. 
The roadside has been cleared.
The trees have all been cut.
Now the old road has been covered with  
a nice smooth coat of black asphalt.

Hardly anyone walks this old road anymore.
But I do. Cause in my mind I have stopped time.
And at any time I choose I can just sit back,
close my eyes, and reflect and walk,
one more time down that old red gravel road.

         Dan Doty


Dan Doty currently resides in Memphis, Tennessee but is a former resident of Attala County.


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copyright © 2005 by Everette Carr. All rights reserved.

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