7 Excuses for Why I Don’t Cuss

1. I failed to form a habit 

as I grew among weeds

in a kind hillbilly woman’s garden

across the creek, up the holler

and beside the oil wells.

2. I have no need to impress,

to fluff my feathers

like a male peacock

showing I mean business

by littering my speech

with meaningless syllables.

3. I say too much anyway,

why add words without substance,

save to prove tetosterone existence

or hormonal imbalance

or fear of unacceptance or belief

that I must because…well, I just must.

4. It’s common, too common,

ultimate cliches. Anybody

can do it, without true thought,

demonstrating words without purpose

in an age of actions without thought.

6. Once, when I was small

granny said, “Ladies don’t cuss,

men may,

 women may,

but not noblemen,

not honorable men

and never ladies.

Be brave. Be unique.

Be a lady. When you grow up,

they will be rare.”

7. Granny would wash my mouth

with lye soap.

Lye tastes terrible.

***Disclaimer: be open minded. Don’t hate the poet because she believes a mouth can be clean and still communicate. She’s a nice person. Really.

Author: Darlene Franklin-Campbell

I am a poet, novelist and artist living in the Appalachian Foothills. I believe we are great spiritual beings on a journey through this physical realm. We are timeless entities stepped into time.

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