Evening Will Come: A Monthly Journal of Poetics (Anthologies Feature—Issue 38, February 2014)

some hickey thoughts

i was out back slapping skeets to take the call

shelly was in the heart of the desert or in georgia bingo was our neigh-mo

we had become friends at AWP denver having read together

we recognized wildness topsy earth in each other

wrote with unclean nails hammerers both

i was the slurry mud she was the spark stone

via the phone while i made raspberry stigmata via the slapped mosquito on my arms

on the backporch on the family farm with 3 children hollering bloody murder and the hundred thousand halo innertubes of the A’s in baaA all puttin belly on the wind

there and then she had the rock-cuss idea to do the book and we settled on hick poetics for the tag it would be a big book with a wild heart

grateful to Lost Roads

said yes to our visioning

thinking back to Lost Roads origins

one book of the where? of the flash fried wormy earth under whitmanian bootheelsole

is THE BATTLEFIELD by mr frank stanford

it hisses out a great plenty off that delta riffing

who who loves the maze has not had it on their lap across america? feral map that

it’s the writing of a 20 something white man on and on in black dialect

now here’s a dissimilar similarity hank williams learned the LOVESICK BLUES maybe by listening to a record by blackface minstrelsy man emmett miller tho the lore is rite about his apprenticing in a way under mr teatot african american bluesman itinerant guitar-cudgel-er of the streets of montgomery

interesting that hank comes to the presence of his place thru the absence of the counterfeit emmett

there’s a juicy elasticity to vernacular think emerson called that the piquancy of the farmer mouth when i think of ‘glimpsing the infinite’ via the local birdie i think of i am the plover / pencil for a wingbone ah my floodgod, niedecker

in the delicious web of influence every writer burps the cud of all that we have read

findings: that there’s a split: you are either embracing yr hickness or yr wondering am i a hick? either melding with or trying to shuck or just plain clothes wandering in wondering that and a lot of people have been offended

if you wanted a little moonshine proofed thru roof regardin the trapdoor squarely at the center of the pedestal platform of the american dream, there’s this: hick was a pride word for folks who believed that the dirtpoor fool could one day rise up and be a big person be a president even how swiftly did that word turn dirty? faster than the bug-size car on the tv tuned to nascar like i say (how my texan grandaddy always put it) like i say a lot of people have been offended

in the tireless hunt for authenticity you ain’t gonna find it exactly either in the countrysides covered up in walmart acne either

certainly writing is taxidermy and the hicks we found procured their fur surgeon kits from what they’ve read yet there’s something indelibly different and shared among those of us who came to first understandings ouuuut there

thinking just now of susan howe’s point about emily dickinson’s #764 had stood a loaded gun that that pioneering frontiering vesuvian wombat of a poem comes in part from ED’s readings of cooper’s leatherstockings novels text as meadow and we go

a-whirligigging across wor(l)dgreens a la foot/eye

so i in no way argue that the hick the one born ouuuut there is in any privileged way gifted with secondsight known only to methtooth latterday shepherds no no

also maybe sometimes as some people grow ‘smarter’ they tend to shuck some the influence of upbringing more and more

oh that was a long time ago

and the meadow i plume from now is a made thing say they thank you very muCH

this: our book wants to celebrate ‘regional’ writing

this: wants to sniff the dirt and floss a gravel off the word

this: singularity there in a bucolic rearing

these: rare birds

these: dirty pages

back to wm blake for a second this book is not gathered against ahsahta’s Arcadia Project

on w/ my blake-lake, to quack: No progression without Contraries