Historic Markers Across Georgia

Always a Reckoning

Marker ID: NPS 
Location: on Carter Boy Hood Farm Jimmy Carter National Historic Site, Old Plains Highway, Plains, GA
County: Sumter
Coordinates: N 32° 1.6    W 084° 26.012
  32.02666666    -84.43353333
Style: Interpretative Sign **
Waymark: None


I had a pony then that lacked a way to work and pay her way, except that every year or two Lady had a colt we sold, but still for less than what was due to buy the fodder, hay and corn she ate at times she couldn't be on pasture.

Neither feed nor colts meant all that much that I could see but still there was a thing about a creature staying on our place that none of us could eat or plow, did not give eggs, or even chase a fox, or rabbit, that was sure to rile my father.

We all knew that Lady's giving me a ride paid some on her debt, in lieu of other ways - but there would be some times I didn't get around to riding in my off-work hours.

And I was sure, when Daddy frowned at some mistake I might've made, he would be asking when he could, "How long since you rode Lady?"

Jimmy Carter's 1995 poem, Always a Reckoning, reflects his childhood impression that, in his father's mind, everything on the farm had to pay its own way. The title is a phrase Jimmy often heard his father say.

Erected by Jimmy Carter National Historic Site - National Park Service - United States Department of Interior.