East Nashville Now!

East Nashville Now!

Episode #7 Local Author Mandy Haynes

September 06, 2015

Episode #7 Local Author Mandy Haynes

On today’s show I am privileged to be speaking with local writer Mandy Haynes. Mandy writes about the raw truths of life, love and difficult choices. She has had her short stories and poems published in several literary magazines and anthologies and she continues to write about what she knows best - life.
She is currently working on two different novels and sitting on one completed novel. In her own words, she is busy living the life in East Nashville with her three dogs and a turtle named Albert.

And remember neighbors every Wednesday until the end of October is the East Nashville Farmer’s Market in Shelby Park. Come join your neighbors and over two dozen vendors who gather in the Grove each Wednesday to bring you the best produce, food items and home made goods that Nashville and surrounding areas has to offer.

Y’all be good to each other out there and remember to do something nice for one of your neighbors. It will make you feel good inside!


by Mandy Haynes

I was raised by an alcoholic father

An atheist, an artist. A hard worker.
At the tender age of nine
I would sit with him at the kitchen table
A bottle of Johnny Walker Red between us
I would watch him drink
While he explained to me why there was no God.
Once I asked, “If you don’t believe in God, then why are you afraid of the dark?
I mean, if there is no God then there is no devil, right?”
I was just a little kid then and I didn’t understand.
Not all demons are that obvious, running around
in red suits,
Carrying pitch forks.
Some (my grandfather) hid behind alcohol and suicide.
Years later my daddy divorced my mother.
He remarried.
Found religion.
Is even a deacon at his church
(whatever the hell that means)
Now he ends all our calls with, “Come to church on Sunday—God loves you!”
It’s all I can do to keep from screaming.
I’m mean to my step-mother.
Call her “cow-pie face” behind her back.
Stare directly into her eyes until she turns away.
I refuse to give her a chance
Listen to rumors about her before she met my daddy, but who am I to judge?
I left home before I turned sixteen.
I’m forty years old now
I have a wonderful son and many reasons to be thankful
I remind myself every day.
But when I see the old man my daddy has become
I’m overcome with a sadness so heavy
It’s almost too much to carry.
We are so much alike—this Bible thumping stranger and me.
It has nothing to do with our brown eyes or high cheekbones
Our artistic abilities or the need to make something with our hands.
We are both just two lost children searching for our fathers.


East Nashville Now Theme Song:
Corn Pone [Instrumental Version]
Music & Lyrics by John Barrett
Copyright 2015 RJM Publishing – BMI Nashville

Guitar: Jonathan Brown
Mandolin: Ben Miller
Upright Bass: Michael Rinne
Harmonica & Snare: John Barrett

Moonshine Promenade
Music by John Barrett
Copyright 2015 RJM Publishing – BMI
East Nashville, Tennessee
[Recorded while floating up the Cumberland River on a raft - October 2013]