R.S. Williams

All I want is to get the words right.

Author: R.S. Williams (page 1 of 68)

Friday Photo: 10/19/18

“Traveling Shoes, Part 3”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2017

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Wednesday Photo: 10/17/18

“Gardenia Hello”
Heard County, Georgia – 2016

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Hillside Monday: 10/15/18

“Ahead of the Storm, Jefferson Street”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2015

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Caturday: 10/13/18

“Brothers, Friends, Window Sleepers”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2015
Models: Buddy (gray tabby) and Miller (solid black)

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Friday Photo: 10/12/18

“Sunday Morning Coming Down”
Waffle House #646
LaGrange, Georgia – 2015

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Wednesday Photo: 10/10/18

I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with pain.
— James Baldwin

“For Wes, Part 7 (You Don’t Know My Pain)”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2017
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Hillside Monday: 10/8/18

“Silk Tree Flower Gone Wild”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2017

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Caturday: 10/6/18

“Gray Tabby Cat with Vines, Vase, and Bulldog”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2018
Model: Clark

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A Late Grocery List

Candy corn.

Candy corn:
It is the worst of the worst Halloween candy, plentiful as fleas and twice as hard to get rid of. In all its corn syrupy FD&C No. 6 glory, it refuses to masquerade as blood sugar-friendly. He never craved sweets like we did, but it was his favorite—in small quantities. At Halloween, when we brought home sack after sack of the stuff, he never complained. Had we asked him to, he would have eaten it until Kingdom Come.
Overall: Cloying, slightly giddy, with a letdown at the end.
Base: Unabashed enthusiasm.
Top Note: A bad case of the Sunday evening can’t-help-its.

Maybe he switched from PBR and Bud tallboys to feel more sophisticated after the divorce. Maybe it was too many late nights spent thumbing through Cosmopolitan, trying to figure out “the modern woman” and what she wanted. She wanted back then the same thing she does now: To be treated like a human being, with respect, dignity, and compassion. Besides, would a modern man in a modern relationship with a modern woman drink a redneck beer? Of course not.
Overall: Hoppy, skunky, with a bitter finish.
Base: Rancid barley.
Top Note: Mule piss.

In oil, in mustard, in cream, but never in hot sauce. His ulcer couldn’t handle it. How he could work fourteen hours in 110-degree heat on just a tin of these and a box of saltine crackers is still beyond me. Meanwhile, the rest of us on the crew tried not to honk up our turkey-Swiss-teriyaki-meatball-chitlins-on-wheat lunchtime transgressions. He tossed the empty cans behind the stock pile, where they proceeded to attract every stray cat within a half-mile radius.
Overall: Stridently fishy, yet earnest, with a hint of struggle.
Base: Sweat-soaked long-sleeved Dickies.
Top Note: Waccamaw River silt.

Candy corn.

In memory of Newt Williams
5 October 1946 ‒ 16 January 1997

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Wednesday Photo: 10/3/18

If I love you, I have to make you conscious of the things you don’t see.
— James Baldwin

“For Wes, Part 6”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2017
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Hillside Monday: 10/1/18

“Amethyst Clouds”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2018

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Thanks again, patrons!

Many, many thanks to the following for their patronage!

Amanda Guyton
Bill Brown
Allison Fix
Kweilin Wilson
Lisa McGovern
Kelley Frank
Ali Lauer
Grayson Hugh
Nicole McLaughlin
Emily Katzenstein
Dana McGlon

Crystal Woods
Syd Mooney
Kit Ketcham
Cheryl Lougen
Carole Thorn

Scott Johnson
Kenny Gray
El Queso
Greg Clary
Marlena Frank
Danny Alexander
Dann Brown
Molly Kay Wright
Charlie Bruin
Eric Woods
Connie Frank
Ellen Koga
Jeff Miller

Val Williams
Gina Adamson-Taylor
Steve Taylor
T. Westgate

These folks’ monthly contributions help me produce more of the stuff they enjoy. They get my original photos, short stories, and creative nonfiction series not published anywhere else. Thanks again, y’all!

You, too, can help support my work. Even $1 a month earns you special patrons-only content. Find out more on my Patreon page.

Image: “Self-Portrait with Gray Shirt and Reflections” (2018)

© R.S. Williams (all rights reserved)


Caturday: 9/29/18

“Cat on Ladder, 1:19pm”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2017
Model: Miller

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Friday Photo: 9/28/18

Ann and Doyle and Debbie
The Station Inn
Nashville, Tennessee – 2018

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Wednesday Photo: 9/26/18

“Rainy Day View, Corner Booth”
Waffle House #646
LaGrange, Georgia – 2018

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Hillside Monday: 9/24/18

“Cat, Chair, Linoleum”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2014
Model: (Davy (aka Hook)

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Caturday: 9/22/18

“Windowsill Cat Study, Late Summer”
LaGrange, Georgia – 2015
Model: Sherwin

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Friday Photo: 9/21/18

“Lichens on Tombstone”
Heard County, Georgia – 2014

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Wednesday Photo: 9/19/18

“Waiting on a Train, Part 22”
Nashville, Tennessee – 2018

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Somewhere in Harris County, Georgia

Driving down Georgia Highway 219 to Columbus, I saw the broken, furry heap slumped at the edge of the asphalt, just beyond the white line. It was a long-haired miniature Dachshund. Someone had loved it enough to dress it in a little Christmas sweater.

You could’ve heard my heart shatter from ten miles away.

As the car and I zoomed past, I made plans for the trip home. On my way back to LaGrange, I’d pull over and see if the dog had a collar and tag. That way, I could call its people with the sad news. If not, I’d move the poor little thing off the road, so it wouldn’t get mashed and scattered about by the tires of passing cars and log trucks. That was the least I could do: give a helpless creature the bit of dignity in death that had escaped it in life.

It was almost dark when I returned. I stopped the car on the side of the road, about 75 feet from the pitiful carcass. That was the safest place to park on the curvy, hilly two-lane road. I walked back to where I’d seen the little dog early that morning. The knot in my stomach grew. It always does, when I stop to move dead animals out of the highway.

And there it—wait. What?

Nope, no dead weenie dog in a fancy sweater. Instead, there lay two beautiful ceramic dolls. Both were a little scraped up from the fall onto the pavement, but still in good shape.

I peered down the bank into the ditch. Strewn for maybe 50 yards were all kinds of items: a few household gadgets, some discarded clothing, pieces of children’s toys, a little garbage. All of it, dolls included, must’ve flown unsecured out of the bed of someone’s pickup truck.

Funny what we think we see when we’re moving by at 70 miles per hour.

All I could think of was some little girl—or maybe a not-so-little girl—sick with panic over her missing dolls. I gently picked them up and carried them back to the car. They looked so sad lying there in the passenger seat. But I thought it a shame to leave them lonely and abandoned by the side of the highway.

That was eight years ago.

I never found the dolls’ little girl.

Photo: Roadside Dolls (17 September 2017)

© R.S. Williams (all rights reserved)

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