old rooster crows...
Out of the mist come the rocks
and the twisted
O Mabson Southard
Mabon Southard was born Ordway Southard in Cambridge, Massachusetts
on November 29, 1911 to Mabel Austin Southard and Elmer Ernest Southard.
Mabel held an M.D. and practiced medicine while Elmer was a professor
of psychiatry at Harvard.
poet suffered through the loss of his father at age 8 to pneumonia
and was primarily raised by his mother. Also, his older brother
Austin developed schizophrenia and killed himself in his late teens.
Southard blamed his brothers illness on family pressure to
excel academically at the time.
Southard attended Harvard for two years until he developed tuberculosis
and spent a year in a sanitarium. Upon release, however, he did
not return to Harvard. Instead, he resisted family pressures in
order to carry out an independent and unconventional lifestyle.
closest friend growing up was his sister, Anne. Anne later introduced
Ordway to his future wife, Mary Carr Boggs. They married in 1936
and had one child, a girl, in 1945, Barbara Southard. The couple
moved around a lot, settling in places such as Mexico, Alabama,
Alaska, New York City, and Hawaii. Both were highly influenced by
Marxist Socialist thought and participated in the Civil Rights Movement.
in Hawaii, Ordway and Mary took Hawaiian language classes, in which
they adopted the namesO and Malia. The names were so popular
among their friends that they stuck. The name of Mabson is derived
from his mothers name, Mabel. Southard integrated his mothers
name into his own in response to the feminist thought that was influencing
him at the time.
moved to British Columbia and lived on Vancouver Island until his
death on May 6, 2000.
information in biography provided by Barbara.
profile of haiku writer, O. Mabson Southard, was researched, written
and created by Brock Peoples. See his reader response essay:
The haiku of American poet
O Mabson Southard
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