Thomas Reynolds The 2River View, 9.4 (Summer 2005)

The founder of bluegrass
wears an ill-fitting pork pie hat
and abuses his unattractive wife,
tying her to the bed,
telling her it was all her fault.

The ill-constructed cabin
overlooking the creek
is a sieve to winter winds,
draining away his will,
leaving only kernels of hate.

Just before sunset,
diphtheria killed the child
who played in the corner
building log cabins
out of corn cobs.

The cabin is dark,
save for embers,
and wind screams
through wall cracks,
echoes in the dead grass.

All night he plays the fiddle,
a gift from his father
three hundred miles away,
above the wife's moans
and rustling of bluegrass.
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