Picking up the pieces

Well see— he’d already named the animals!
I didn’t really have anything to do, yes we did
Walk in the garden every evening..
I must admit maybe I was bored & the serpent
Was an intellectual & he made me laugh & I was laughing when I tasted it.
I wanted to change names of some of the animals,
I must admit I never asked if I could,
Neither of them said I couldn’t..
Just seemed like it was a bargain already made, oh he would do anything for me!
& well I didn’t even know that he hadn’t named all the animals
Didn’t find that out til, well
after we were outside & some of these other animals seemed to be intent on eating us
Oh this surprised me, this thing called fear, but I like eating meat!
& now I’m not bored with him any more I must admit
He protects & takes care of me, but these children, oh if I didn’t
Have him, as much as I love them, it would be impossible..
But you know I think someday one of them will kill the other
&  I cannot imagine this..
I do miss those walks
When it was that love was as constant as air..
Now there are only times when I look at him & vaguely remember..
Still he can be bad
Now he growls & once after drinking he hit me & this was not like him &
I bled, & now I bleed regularly &
What have we done?
I killed the snake last week & after I did
I heard him laugh from the grove in the garden we can’t go into any more,
But then again maybe it was from the forest beyond,
& I’m afraid of that place..
I couldn’t tell & anyway I saw the snake again the next day
I know where there are flowers by a quiet pool
Perhaps I could go there and come back?
If I leave him it will be dangerous
Perhaps I’ll go there and come back..
Oh, my heart breaks when he screams in the middle of the night!


she handed it to me
then I dunno,
how I did it—knew I shouldn’t
but I just sliced me a slice
of fruit w/ the ol’ barlow knife
while I was looking at a coiled up snake,
who’d been talking to my woman,

& then first thing I know,
I was making moonshine
Skip & go naked foolin’ round til waay
after midnight every-night
everything seemed clear for a while,
but trouble was I ended up havin’-to-get-a-job, plus
plow the farm & then the woman left
& I had to take care of the kids too,
& keepin’ the house from fallen apart..

no more huntn’ & fishin’
just makin’ mortgage payments
for a farm I was given free and clear
long ago before the bank was even a notion

seems like there was a time
when there was just the plants & animals
& clear blue sky, white clouds
& the low and high blue flint hills
& the woman had really just been apart of me
that couldn’t no more leave
than I could say anything bad about anything
& hav’n kids didn’t involve them growing up
& killing each other
& back then I don’t ever remember
screaming in the middle of the night either….