Academic journal article Southern Quarterly

Burn, Hollywood, Burn

Academic journal article Southern Quarterly

Burn, Hollywood, Burn

Article excerpt

My son’s working on a diorama

for his Gone With the Wind project.

The whole thing has to fit in a sideways shoebox,

so his vision of Tara lit up by burning fields

can’t make the cut. He settles on a scene

with Clark Gable on one knee in the parlor

pitching an alternate future to Vivien Leigh.

He finds a good shot of them online,

prints it out in living color, and glues it

to drymount as a cutout. Same with a table

of fresh flowers, a set of curio shelves, a velvet arm chair.

He snips out one side of the box for a picture window,

lines the inside edges with gold satin for drapes,

but he can’t find an image of a fiery field anywhere

to match his notion of what a burning legacy looks like.

The forest fires out west come close, but give off

too much smoke. We mess with the saturation

on a pic of the aurora borealis but can’t get the shine

just right. …

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