Academic journal article Southern Quarterly

Remedy: Sassafras Tea

Academic journal article Southern Quarterly

Remedy: Sassafras Tea

Article excerpt

Like a farmer at harvest,

my mother dug black earth

until she struck strong roots

of our sassafras tree

in the soil-rich side yard.

Like a wood worker,

axe in hand, she chopped,

with her feelings for family,

and gathered its root,

claiming a remedy for the flu-

i, her oldest child, flushed

with fever and body aches.

She rinsed the dirt away,

boiled the root to get tea.

How the woody-brown aroma wafted

through our newly built house.

Like a nurse responsible for a patient,

my mother handed me a cup of tea

as daylight waned into sleep

and trees whispered their stories

and sky shielded the whites of eyes.

University of Mount Olive

[Author Affiliation]

Lenard D. …

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