Spring 1985 • Vol. VII No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1985 |

Dogma: Pigmeat and Whiskey

For Fred Chappell I woke in half-dark. There was smoke That followed me, And I floated up choked on pin oak, post oak, Water oak, and just enough hickory Burning. Somebody came, Lifted me and spoke, whiskey Mixed in that voice with my name: Just the wind shifting, son. Go to sleep. But the dream I was having wouldn't have me back. He put me down Away from the fire, on the other Side of that smoke-cloud blown Thick to the ground I had dreamed on, and where The old man still sat Silent in his straight-backed chair, Ghostly in coalglow risen from the pit Where the spitted pig sputtered And leaked its vitriolic fat. I could not see his face, but I knew the red It must be turning As he sat like the martyr he was, as he suffered In silence, burning At the stake of another indignity. He's old, my father was always saying, Old and proud and ornery: Too pigheaded to miss one more year Of lording over what could only Be called his family ritual. Wheelchair Or no wheelchair, stroke or no s

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T. R. Hummer’s tenth book of poems, Ephemeron, was published by LSU Press in November 2011; his second book of essays, Available Surfaces, will appear in University of Michigan Press’s Poets on Poetry Series in 2012. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona, and teaches at Arizona State University.

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Terrorism

By T. R. Hummer

For Fred Chappell I woke in half-dark. There was smoke That followed me, And I floated up choked on pin oak, post oak, Water oak, and just enough hickory Burning. […]

Text

By T. R. Hummer

For Fred Chappell I woke in half-dark. There was smoke That followed me, And I floated up choked on pin oak, post oak, Water oak, and just enough hickory Burning. […]

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