“Ode to a Man Who Says Motherfucker Twice as Much as Any Motherfucker Should” – Poetry by Jeremiah Driver

Strength- Niki de Sainte Phalle, 1973
Strength- Niki de Sainte Phalle, 1973

We interrupt our regularly scheduled dark weirdness to bring you some poetry about family & love. Please enjoy “Ode to a Man Who Says Motherfucker Twice as Much as Any Motherfucker Should,” one of four heartwarming poems contributed to our Fall 2016 issue by our new Poetry Consultant, Jeremiah Driver.

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BLESSED ARE THE STORIES OF STRENGTH: the car
Aunt Delores lifted off your pinned body;

The contest of pulling recurve bows for poundage,
That you won annually until Bo Jackson

Pulled the measure to the arrow’s end;
And the gentle barters of broken ribs with Uncle Alex.

Blessed are the stories of folly: the man,
With short permed hair who couldn’t swim

So he walked the pond’s depth and reached the bank,
Gasping; the kitten, your wife named Lucy

Whose testicles dropped and you christened Lucille Balls;
The bell-shaped lampshade, with a pink floral pattern

That you put on your head, the fabric balls dangling –
Above your muscle shirt – as you blew the camera a kiss

With wadded lips for a picture that still makes your sister laugh;
And the lyrics to Good Night Irene that you sang, standing

Over Uncle Charlie’s drunken body after it settled on the ground.
Blessed are the raindrops that fell hard enough to drown men

Who couldn’t laugh and dripped from our noses
As we shook hands – two motherfuckers in a horse trailer.

When Grandpa said a guy would have to be queer
and have a cast iron stomach to eat pussy,

You said well then, you’ve got three queer brothers!
Bless be all our brothers.

Blessed is the elbow and fist that stopped quick,
Level with your shoulder when I told you

In the hospital parking lot, that your brother was dead.
Blessed be all the motherfuckers.

— for Great Uncle Denny

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Jeremiah_DriverJEREMIAH DRIVER earned an MFA in Writing at Sarah Lawrence College, won the Thomas Lux Award, has been a horse trainer, a service member in the United States Army, worked heavy construction in Manhattan, and taught literacy/ writing in Queens and the Bronx. He blogs at jeremiahdriver.wordpress.com. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Terminus, Columbia Journal, UCity Review, Prairie Gold: An Anthology of the American Heartland, and Piecrust.

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