Southern Potato Salad by Mary Susan Clemons

Southern Potato Salad

by Mary Susan Clemons

You can find it in the Fellowship Hall
on the communion table, between
the macaroni salad with its diced bell peppers
and the thick slices of Georgia reds.

Or perhaps you tasted it when the hospital
became part of your daily routine
blended with family from Tennessee
and North Carolina. The Smiths
took Monday, Andersons Tuesday,
and Wednesday was Ruth King’s make
your own subs and her secret family recipe.

You might have found it in the Kroger deli,
held it smashed against a plastic container,
recalled southern evenings on a pine cooled
porch balancing it on a Dixie plate.

Or was it at the annual June picnic
that you had your first taste. With or without
the brown skins, with or without Vidalia
onions, with or without mustard,
but always with the yellow and white of boiled
eggs and potatoes firm as the farmer’s
hilled biceps; blended with mayonnaise
creamy as Sunday morning’s sermon
with a celery crunch and a sweet relish twang.

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