a haibun for the Writer's Cramp---prompt:the South
Joanie's Blue Crab Cafe
There isn't much left of Old Florida anymore, increasing population and rampant development turning most places into mall-like replicas of each other. But out on the Tamiami Trail in the middle of the Everglades sits Joanie's Blue Crab Cafe.
grey weathered boards
a missing step
Joanie always has a pot on of her famous lima-bean stew and the menu is heavy with frog-legs and alligator. If you're looking for fast food though, head east to Miami or west to Naples.
a bowl of stew
slow food for the soul
Joanie's decor is eccentric---no neon or chic fern-bar here. You'll find stuffed owls, nekkid lady art, and yes---alligators and more alligators---with live ones out back in the canal. You'll have time to drown a pitcher or two of beer, and perhaps swap stories with an Everglades angler, or German tourists. Just up the road is the Ochopee post-office---world's smallest---no toilet or A/C. Joanie's has both. Old Florida is disappearing fast, come before it all disappears.
we came to the garden
knew it as Paradise
built strip-malls on it
Written for: "The Writer's Cramp"
Won the day's award!