The Shoe Burnin’: Stories of Southern Soul is a collection of the works of 24 diverse, talented southern writers and singers.
Jennifer Horne grew up in Arkansas and has lived for many years in Alabama. She and her husband, literary critic and interviewer Don Noble, live by a lake in Cottondale, Ala., and Horne teaches classes in poetry, memoir and travel writing for the Honors College at the University of Alabama.
Horne’s book Working the Dirt: An Anthology of Southern Poets (2003) brought together over one hundred poems about farming and gardening in the South. Bottle Tree (2010), a book of poems focusing on Horne’s experiences as a Southern woman, was nominated for a SIBA poetry book of the year award.
Her two coedited books (with Wendy Reed), All Out of Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality (2006) and Circling Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality (2012) have received acclaim for the high quality of the essays and their contribution to discussions about religion in the American South.
Her collection of short stories, Tell the World You’re a Wildflower, will be published in 2014.
Excerpt from The Shoe Burnin' Stories of Southern Soul
“The Other Shoe” by Jennifer Horne
My dog Lucy started bringing home shoes just after we moved to a place outside of town, beyond the university perimeter zone.
At first I’d save them, hoping their partners would show up, but when they didn’t I would throw them away, though it seemed a shame.
Another place we’d lived, Lucy had brought me a pair of size-7 cowboy boots, the left and then the right, a day apart. At first I worried maybe they’d come off a corpse or something, but they were clean and nearly new so I decided they’d fallen off a truck somewhere and I gave them to my sister for her birthday because she wears size-7 shoes and has learned not to ask too many questions about the provenance of her gifts from me. My all-purpose answer, which is also mostly true, is “The thrift store,” or, for my more upscale friends, “A great little consignment shop.”
I was out walking Lucy one day (she runs free, so the walk is mostly for me, and for companionship) when an old brown Ford pickup slowed to speak. I wasn’t afraid. Beyond the u.p.z., people do that. At the very least they wave, nod, or tip-raise a finger up from the steering wheel.
Circling Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality
“Circling Faith is a vital, welcome, eclectic, and ecumenical collection, and an important addition to contemporary works exploring spirituality. To students of southern culture, women’s studies, and contemporary American divinity and religious studies, this book will prove to be a valuable resource.”
—Melissa J. Delbridge, author of Family Bible
“This new anthology, edited by writer-producer Reed and poet Horne, exemplifies some of the best of the multiplicity of voices with something to say. Its core idea is distinctive: writings on religion and spirituality by women of the American South. There are some big names here—an interview with Alice Walker and a touching essay by Mary Karr. Susan Cushman also discusses Presbyterianism and Eastern Orthodoxy, and Brenda Osbey writes of everything she can’t tell you about New Orleans and its voodoo.”
Circling Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality(2012)
Bottle Tree by Jennifer Horne (2010)
All Out of Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality (2006)
Working the Dirt: An Anthology (2003)