Summer 2011 • Vol. XXXIII No. 3 Poetry |

The Art of Heaven

In the middle of my life I came to a dark wood, the smell of barbecue, kids running in the yards. Not deep depression. The nice Hell of suburbs. Speed bumps. The way things aren't quite paradise. Nights I read Speer's Inside the Third Reich. He made Hitler so amiable. It seemed important to see that. There had been a murder in town. The victim was Lucia's student, a naturalist and promising poet. Jealousy on steroids. Spying. Stalking. Threats. Then violence of such a brutal, dehumanizing kind, I felt the need to submerge the killer in a pattern. A friend said the connection between depression and humor was genetic. Because the mother was often sad, the child learned to tell her jokes. I wondered if the killer played an instrument. Coming home each afternoon past the dairy farm, and the three curves before Union Hill Church, I kept rewinding and viewing evidence from his trial: the break-in, the stabbing, the new friend helpless, listening as she asked, "Am I goi

Already have an account? Login

Join KR for even more to read.

Register for a free account to read five free pieces a month from our current issue and digital archive.
Register for Free and Read This Piece



Or become a subscriber today and get complete, immediate access to our digital archives at every subscription level.
Rodney Jones teaches in the Warren Wilson Low Residency MFA Program and is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers. His honors include the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Kingsley Tufts Award, and the Harper Lee Award. His new book, Village Prodigies, which combines techniques of fiction and poetry, will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the spring of 2017.

Read More

Homecoming

By Rodney Jones

In the middle of my life I came to a dark wood, the smell of barbecue, kids running in the yards. Not deep depression. The nice Hell of suburbs. Speed […]

Subscribe

Your free registration with Kenyon review incudes access to exclusive content, early access to program registration, and more.

Donate

With your support, we’ll continue 
to cultivate talent and publish extraordinary literature from diverse voices around the world.