Alford's Devotional

Old forms are like beautiful ruins, no longer serving their original purpose but embodying a spirituality that is less about the coming of a Messiah and more about waiting.

I couldn’t tell the day from night


Faded purple curtains covered the windows.
A soft casual blend of peach, gardenia, honeysuckle and lilac filled the room. Yet, these couldn’t mask the other scents.

There are those who struggle with sickness, but there is grace and assurance.

I poured powder into the water and watched it dissolve. And then placed it on the nightstand which was propped up on empty cigarette cartons.

Pass the little Baptist church, a dark-green cypress set in tufts of summer grass, the rains, which make the box turtle glad. Stop the car and carry him into that grass and yellow sedge, just past the building where he sits, closed in silence. Everything is still here
 Alford’s Devotional is a different kind of contemplative literature.

It doesn’t give the reader green pastures or rest. It, instead, rests in the arena of uncertainty.

Although it takes on the structure of a typical devotional, it acts as memoir too, dealing with the death of parents, broken-down vehicles and leaking roofs. 

I took these images in Denmark Mississippi. I was doing research for my novel, which I had initially set in Denmark. Later, I decided to set the novel in the place where I grew up, Tanigipahoa Parish in Louisiana.

The excerpts are from my poetry book ALFORD'S DEVOTIONAL.