Mistress Mississippi: Volume Three of A Mississippi Trilogy

by Louis Daniel Brodsky

Cosmic Consolations

Leaving you this glorious morning
Presents a hornèd dilemma;
Though staying one day more
Could hardly pose universal distress,
We both know I must get home.

Perhaps separations
Are the only protection lovers possess
Against satiety. Yet just as God
Wrested perfection from bone and flesh,
Placed yawns, sleep, and death

Between success and dreams,
Ancient and inchoate civilizations,
So too did He conceive redemption
To offset forgetfulness
By letting the human spirit refresh itself.

Lady, for now we must trust
That Predestination has taken notice of us
And made reservations in both our names
For Heaven's first available condo
Or at least a suite in the Peabody Hotel.

Use the player below to listen to Louis Daniel Brodsky read this poem.



In the concluding volume of Louis Daniel Brodsky’s narrative trilogy about a Northerner’s personal odyssey in Faulkner’s Mississippi, the hypocrisy and bigotry of small-town Oxford, with its commercialization of Faulkner, exacerbate the main character’s disillusion, a malaise that ultimately leads to his moral and spiritual degradation. Louis D. Brodsky always works in improbable and daring ways. The narrator of this striking monologue . . . metaphorically transforms the State of Mississippi into "Mistress Mississippi," the image incarnate of his illusions and delusions of desire.
— Lewis P. Simpson, author of Dispossessed Garden: Pastoral and History in Literature

The poems in which Brodsky tells his reader and himself about this special world are lively and spirited and quite realistic.
— Cleanth Brooks, author of William Faulkner: The Yoknapatawpha Country

 Click here to read some of Brodsky's Faulkner essays and interviews.

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