Academic journal article The Virginia Quarterly Review

Country Western Singer

Academic journal article The Virginia Quarterly Review

Country Western Singer

Article excerpt

From The Book of Last Thoughts

I used to feel like a new man

After the day's first brew.

But then the new man I became

Would need a tall one too.

As would the new man he became,

And the new one after him

And so on and so forth till the new men made

The dizzy room go dim.

And each one said, I'll be your muse,

I'll trade you song for beer:

He said, I'll be your salt lick, honey,

If you will be my deer.

He said, I'll be your happy hour,

And you, boy, you'll be mine

And mine won't end at six or seven

Or even at closing time.

Yes, son, I'll be your spirit guide;

I'll lead you to Absolut,

To Dewers, Bushmills, and Jamisons,

Then down to Old Tangle Foot.

And there I'll drain the pretense from you

That propped you up so high;

I'll teach you salvation's just

Salivation without the I.

To hear his sweet talk was to think

You'd gone from rags to riches,

Till going from drink to drink became

Like going from hags to bitches,

Like going from bed to barroom stool,

From stool to bathroom stall,

From stall to sink, from sink to stool,

From stool to hospital. …

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