Thursday, January 19, 2006


--an Ode to Elvis

My brother and I stayed out till dark
catching rabbits, so we could be your
friend, but you killed yourself, so they
say. We have our doubts and we travel

up to Graceland to sing you the lyrics
to our latest, only Justin takes after
you--strumming the same four chords,
but boy, do we have a chorus--knock

a mule on its ass. We live in Tupelo,
so I guess we ain't got much more
to do than think of you hip thrusting
the wind while your leather snakes

snap with the bass of the drum. Uncle
Tommy said you forget about him
after you left on your big record label,
and ever since, he's been a Jack-

of-All-Trades, living in the middle
of a junk yard, sinking in Mississippi
red clay, a regular sow in a sty.

Even if it is true, that's his problem--
his responsibility. So don't worry
about us, Elvis, you go on shaking

those hips, making that leather pop
on those thighs when you hit a note,
when you feel something inside jump

out like somebody done got hold of you.
You've given us salvation from the South--
you've given us hope.

Kerry James Evans
Winter 2005


Rae Pater said...

heh, 'knock a mule on its ass' lol.

Rae Pater said...

oh, I meant to say, great poem!

Michelle e o said...

Long live the king =) Great Ode.