Jim Trainer

Archive for May, 2014|Monthly archive page

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE-An Evening of Poetry&Spoken Word at Big Blue Marble Bookstore-Saturday June 7 at 7 PM

In Performance, Philadelphia, Poetry, Spoken Word, Writing on May 29, 2014 at 12:25 pm

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 5/29/14

Please join us for a great night of poetry and spoken word. Jim Trainer returns to Philly to perform and read with great writer Don Bajema and wonderful poet Charlie O’Hay.

Jim Trainer is a communicator. Growing up in the hardcore punk scene of the early 90’s taught him everything he needed to know about real work. Jim Trainer believes in rock and roll. It may be our only salvation in this dark world. He’s carried the torch for independent media, broadcasting as one of the early voices of Radio Volta(88.1fm)and writing for the Philadelphia IMC’s Wire in the early aughts. He’s appeared as The Reason, broadcasting on WKDU 91.7fm while writing for its Communiqué. He’s been the driver for several internationally touring bands, taking him to every state in the Continental U.S. He’s followed that Americana sound all the way down to Austin, TX where he works as a Singer/Songwriter and contributes to Verbicide Magazine.
Farewell to Armor, his debut full-length collection of poetry, is out now through WragsInk Press and available on Amazon.com. Trainer is the founder of Yellow Lark Press and serves as contributor, curator and editor of Going For The Throat, a semi-daily publication of cynicism, outrage, correspondence and romance. If you hear his voice on the air or read his words on the page, Jim Trainer is trying to break down the separation they have built between us. Jim Trainer believes you can be set free and that communication is the key.

landing 2

Novelist, screenwriter, actor and performer Don Bajema was born in St. John’s, New Foundland, Canada in 1949. He is the author of two highly acclaimed collections of short stories, Boy In The Air and Reach, now published as one volume, Winged Shoes and a Shield, by City Lights. As an actor, Bajema first appeared on stage in the West Coast premiere of Sam Shepard’s “Curse of the Starving Class”. With a lead role in the 1983 film “Signal Seven”, Bajema began a long-time collaboration with groundbreaking independent film director Rob Nilsson. He had a lead role in Nilsson’s 1988 Sundance Film Festival Grand Prize winner “Heat and Sunlight” and he wrote and starred in the 1996 film “Chalk,” which Nilsson directed. He has appeared in more than a dozen feature films, most recently Carl Franklin’s 2002 film “High Crimes”. A favorite on the “spoken word circuit”, Bajema has toured extensively in the US, Canada and Europe, performing at hundreds of clubs, theaters and universities. He has shared the spoken word stage with the likes of Hubert Selby, Lydia Lunch, Henry Rollins, and Jim Carroll. He is a former world-class track and field athlete who competed in the 1972 US Olympic trials and played football for legendary coach Don Coryell at San Diego State University. He currently lives with his family in New York City.

Brother Don

Charles O’Hay is the recipient of a 1995 Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fellowship in poetry. His poems have appeared in over 100 literary publications including Gargoyle, South Carolina Review, Brooklyn Review, West Branch, Mudfish, and New York Quarterly.
The author lives with his wife and daughter in eastern Pennsylvania. Far From Luck, his first full-length collection of poems is out now through Lucky Bat Books and available on Amazon.com

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An Evening of Poetry&Spoken Word
with
Jim Trainer (Farewell to Armor) WragsInk
Don Bajema (Winged Shoes&A Shield) City Lights Booksellers
Charlie O’Hay (Far From Luck) Lucky Bat Books
Saturday June 7
at
Big Blue Marble Books
551 Carpenter Lane
Philadelphia, PA 19119
7pm

CONTACT: Jim Trainer: 512-203-6288
jamesmichaeltrainer@gmail.com,
jimtrainer.net
###

Fair

In Uncategorized on May 27, 2014 at 8:17 pm

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BLOOD AND ASHES

In Charlie O'Hay, Poetry on May 21, 2014 at 1:00 pm

When you step off the bus in a strange town
duffel over your shoulder
hot breeze in your face
you remember the thing you’re trying to escape
is the thing you always bring with you.

It walks inside your shoes
sleeps inside your pillow
knows your bad dreams by name
and won’t wash out with soap
or gin.

You find a job washing dishes
or unloading crates of auto parts
(love and hate tattooed across
the knuckles of each day)
and still at night you can’t sleep.

You play solitaire with the pages
of an old pinup calendar
and count the cuts on your hands
while humming a Charlie Feathers song
to drown the engines in your head.

But the steady broom of tires
on wet pavement
tells you it’s time to pack up again.
Another bus ride, another town
more blood, more ashes.

The thing you pack first
is the thing you’re trying to lose.

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Charles O’Hay is the recipient of a 1995 Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fellowship in poetry. His poems have appeared in over 100 literary publications including Gargoyle, South Carolina Review, Brooklyn Review, West Branch, Mudfish, and New York Quarterly.
The author lives with his wife and daughter in eastern Pennsylvania. Far From Luck, his first full-length collection of poems is out now through Lucky Bat Books and available on Amazon.com.

Please join us for a great night of poetry and spoken word. Jim Trainer returns to Philly to perform and read with great writer Don Bajema and wonderful poet Charlie O’Hay.

Saturday June 7
An Evening of Poetry&Spoken Word
Don Bajema
Charlie O’Hay
Jim Trainer
Big Blue Marble Bookstore
551 Carpenter Lane
Philadelphia, PA 19119
SHOW TIMES TBA

Events Page on Facebook

“summer’s here and the time is right for fighting in the street”

In Poetry on May 15, 2014 at 8:07 am

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Bob Dylan’s Birthday Bash
Hosted by D.C. Bloom
at the Whip In
1950 S I H 35
Austin, TX 78704
7-11pm

You ain’t going nowhere else than to the Whip In on May 24th to celebrate Bob Dylan’s 73rd birthday! And the time it ain’t a-changin’ … It’s pretty firm. It’s gonna start at 7 pm in the beer garden! … The Man in me – D.C., that is – is gonna host this million dollar bash that will cost you NOTHING to attend! (Tips appreciated, though, natch … ) I want you, I want you, I want you (to come) so bad! … I pity the poor immigrant and/or native born citizen who misses this party!! Bob’s gonna be 73, but we’re gonna be forever young on the 24th cuz not even a hurricane or an idiot wind is gonna keep the following folks from singing a few Bob Dylan songs for ya’ll! … As host of the evening, all I really wanna do is open the evening by singing a couple myself and then introducing Ashley Monical, Don Pedigo, Mo McMorrow, Jim Trainer, Nathan Hamilton, B Sterling Archer, Pete Minda, Danny Fast Fingers, Amanda Pearcy, Josh Luckenbach, Dana McBride, Leeann Atherton, Amy Zamarripa, Cary Cooper, Jean Synodinos, Penny Ney, and the Girl From the North Texas Hill Country. Pete Minda’s band will be serving as the house band for the evening! And we’re gonna be callin’ em the Elston Guns, after the stage name a youthful Robert Zimmerman used in Hibbing, MN. Performers being added hourly, so check back! … Oh, and there WILL be cake!!! Come!!!

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Bedpost Quickies

A Sex&Relationship Based, Open Performance Series, And Spinoff of the Wildly Successful Bedpost Confessions

Tuesday June 2
at the
ND
502 Brushy Street
Austin, TX
Sign Up’s at 7
Show Starts at 7:30

Events Page on Facebook

Friday June 6
Melodie’s Cafe
Cardinal Arms
Mark Thousands
Jim Trainer
Kettle Pot Black
Andrew Meoray Milgore
2 E Lancaster Avenue
Ardmore, PA 19003
7:30pm

After cutting his teeth for years backing legendary bluesman Shakey Lyman in Philadelphia, Jim Trainer came down to Austin, TX following that Americana sound. He wanted to emulate the taut economy of song and high lonesome poetry he heard coming from all those great Texas folk and country outlaws.
Enlisting the talents of Justin Kolb (Jesse Dayton/Bobby Flores) on upright bass and Billy Brent Malkus (The Texas Sapphires/Nathan Hamilton) on telecaster and harmonies, Trainer was able to realize his roots-rock sound and vision. The acoustic combo has performed at Momo’s, the Scoot Inn and Romeo’s when not attending to residencies at the Whip In and the Beale Street Tavern. Trainer now plays solo the Third Thursday of every month at House Wine in the 04 (details below).
The characters Trainer writes of know pain and heartache but it doesn’t stop them from being in love with the gamble of life. His songwriting takes the listener with him down that dusty road where his anti-heroes might find redemption and Victory even if it means losing on their own terms.

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Events Page on Facebook

Saturday June 7
An Evening of Poetry&Spoken Word
Don Bajema
Charlie O’Hay
Jim Trainer
Big Blue Marble Bookstore
551 Carpenter Lane
Philadelphia, PA 19119
SHOW TIMES TBA

Please join us for a great night of poetry and spoken word. Jim Trainer returns to Philly to perform and read with great writer Don Bajema and wonderful poet Charlie O’Hay.

Jim Trainer is a communicator. Growing up in the hardcore scene of the early 90’s taught him everything he needed to know about the real work. Jim Trainer believes in rock and roll. It may be our only salvation in this dark world. He’s carried the torch for independent media, broadcasting as one of the early voices of Radio Volta(88.1fm)and writing for the Philadelphia IMC’s Wire in the early aughts. He’s appeared as The Reason, broadcasting on WKDU 91.7fm while writing for its Communiqué. He’s been the driver for several internationally touring metal bands taking him to every state in the Continental U.S. He’s followed that Americana sound all the way down to Austin, TX where he works as a Singer/Songwriter and contributes to Verbicide Magazine. “We are not that different, you and I.” If you hear his voice on the air or read his words on the page, Jim Trainer is trying to break down the separation they have built between us. Jim Trainer believes you can be set free and that communication is the key.

Novelist, screenwriter, actor and performer Don Bajema was born in St. John’s, New Foundland, Canada in 1949. He is the author of two highly acclaimed collections of short stories, Boy In The Air and Reach, now published as one volume, Winged Shoes and a Shield, by City Lights. As an actor, Bajema first appeared on stage in the West Coast premiere of Sam Shepard’s “Curse of the Starving Class”. With a lead role in the 1983 film “Signal Seven”, Bajema began a long-time collaboration with groundbreaking independent film director Rob Nilsson. He had a lead role in Nilsson’s 1988 Sundance Film Festival Grand Prize winner “Heat and Sunlight” and he wrote and starred in the 1996 film “Chalk,” which Nilsson directed. He has appeared in more than a dozen feature films, most recently Carl Franklin’s 2002 film “High Crimes”. A favorite on the “spoken word circuit”, Bajema has toured extensively in the US, Canada and Europe, performing at hundreds of clubs, theaters and universities. He has shared the spoken word stage with the likes of Hubert Selby, Lydia Lunch, Henry Rollins, and Jim Carroll. He is a former world-class track and field athlete who competed in the 1972 US Olympic trials and played football for legendary coach Don Coryell at San Diego State University. He currently lives with his family in New York City.

Charles O’Hay is the recipient of a 1995 Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fellowship in poetry. His poems have appeared in over 100 literary publications including Gargoyle, South Carolina Review, Brooklyn Review, West Branch, Mudfish, and New York Quarterly.
The author lives with his wife and daughter in eastern Pennsylvania. Far From Luck, his first full-length collection of poems is out now through Lucky Bat Books and available on Amazon.com.

Events Page on Facebook

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Austin’s No Shame Theatre
5 Minutes Anything Goes
Salvage Vanguard Theatre
Manor Road
Austin, TX
Sign Up’s At 9:30 PM
Show Starts At 10:00 PM

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Third Thursdays at House Wine
Roots, Blues&Rockabilly provided by
Jim Trainer
every Third Thursday at
House Wine
408 Josephine Street
Austin, TX 78704
7-10 PM
The Next Third Thursday is Thursday June 19

Events Page on Facebook

On Writing

In Being A Writer, Writing on May 14, 2014 at 11:37 am

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She wants to keep it light. Fuckin A. Hard to argue with that. I been up against it so long, I fight shadows in the dark and create problems for myself in Paradise. Yep. This old soldier’s plenty battle worn and more than a little loopy. Be nice to take it ease, as they say in South Philly. But it ain’t easy taking it easy. She can’t save me. Nobody can.
I don’t need to be forgiven.
-Young Widows
The only thing that will ever save me is my Art. You’ve heard me write it before. My art has been the salve, the anchor, the reason and the way out, again and again. The buddhists were right. The way out is the way in. And so it goes.

And so, at this juncture, with the bad blues whipped and PLENTY of time to git behind the great white machine, and my oft confessed desire to be something other than a beer-swilling Bukowski wannabe, I will now address writing.
That fucking beast!
Lately I have discovered that my modus operandi has very little, if anything at all, to do with it. I thought I needed to smoke to write. Turns out I was just writing so I could stay out on the roof and burn down another triple-nickel with a lizard eye trained on the beautiful women of Judge’s Hill paying visit the mansion. Turns out I smoke because I am out of my mind. Or perhaps Dr. Asare was right and cannot deal with the world otherwise.
Also, turns out that I can either change it all, get hip, or just take the plunge and go deeper: full-drunk and continue waking up with a headache and a hardon in a nest of typewritten pages. Aho those drunk pages have a flow! They’re far from brilliant and further from coherent, but-whuddiaygonnado?
The truth is, writing is such a battle for me, I sometimes wonder if I should just get a job and do something else.

The only lasting and final danger is this contentment. There’s not one goddamn thing wrong in my life right now. My health informs my Art but better, it sustains it. And shit. This much madness has been too much sorrow.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been performing at least twice a month since I got back from Philly in December, and the crowds are loving it. Performing my work has been a boon to my writing. A reason and a schedule. And let’s not forget the Great White Machine. The machine does all the work, as I was telling Georgia at the White Party on Saturday. The hardest part of writing is sitting down. And that’s it. That’s the gist of it. The nut. The hard 90% that once you win, sells the other 10. Buys the other 10, part&parcel motherfucker.
And so the problem becomes, good&cherished Reader, how do you sit down for the length of time to write 800 words at-a-time? Just like this…or, I mean, other than this? With some undying, burning artist’s credo to do it now, motherfucker-rail against the dayjob and the nightjob and hate the sun for the way it keeps moving on me and if I told you what I was doing today would you shut up and get out of my way? Caffeine Caffeine Caffeieeeeeeeeeeeeene motherfucker and than beer after beer after beer after-ya, you know. Have I rivaled my heroes? Will I ever? Is trying to catch up with them…attainable, or even sustainable?
I got a bead on me. I wake up more me than anyone will ever be for their whole life. Shit, I gotta be me, whoever that is. Keep stripping that old armor and stop trying to live down my working-class, Upper Fucking Darby karma. Do you see what just happened?
Just like that it snaps. My desire to be better has backslid into a slimy transgression of self-hatred or better-the unholy pressure I put on myself, some kinghell kind of pressure that amounts to nothing in the end except a pack a day habit, too many beers and an anger problem.

But I wrote that book already. In fact it was just last summer that I lost my adolescence. It couldn’t of happened at a better time, unless sleeping homeless in the cemetery of your hometown with an abscess and the teachers of your community college on strike for 2 more weeks of endless summer was the time. DCCC, 93.

Be great to get Zen with it. Breathe. Really chisel at the fucking thing-this “story of my life”. Certainly cut down on trips to the beer store and rule out anymore heavy telephone calls to the girl.
She’s a sweet one. A rare and precious jewel. With the hair of a raven and a smile warmer than the Texas sun. She inspires me to pay attention. Get some writing done and finished, if only to get out into the night, meet her at the dancehall and put my hands on those curves. Those curves are the best writing I’ll ever do. And so I’ve got some catching up to do. And she knows this. She’s right. Even a fool like me can see that.

And so the beast of writing has tamed the beast in me. Writing’s the real problem. Nothing wrong with Jimbo that some Yoga and meditation won’t fix. Or another Guinness and the Counting Crows at 12. Yep. Writing. That cruel Crew Boss, that endless cavern beneath the earth that leads to the sky. But in the coal mines of daylabor writing’s the canary that will never die. We of the Yellow Lark.

Viva la ficción.
Cheung Wai ain’t got nothin on me.
Never Forget The Workers of Upper Big Branch

See you in June.
Trainer
Austin, TX

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Shrieks of Paradise, Correspondence&Rails#14: Livin’ the dream.

In Being A Writer, Jim Trainer, Poetry, Writing on May 7, 2014 at 1:10 pm

Dear Jim,

Thank you for sending your poetry to Philadelphia Stories again! We would love to use your poem “the old dogs of Karma” in our Summer 2014 print issue.

Please reply with your (30-120 word or about 3 sentence) bio and let me know that the poem has not been previously published — in print or online — nor is it slated for publication in the next year. From our author agreement:

Author grants exclusive first North American Serial rights to publish ____________________ (Title) in print and online for 12 months. All rights revert back to the author in one year.

Author hereby acknowledges that this poem has previously been unpublished.

Author acknowledges, warrants and affirms that he/she has read the submission guidelines as set forth in Philadelphia Stories’ website, and acknowledges, warrants affirms that this submission meets those guidelines.

I look forward to hearing from you soon — ideally, before the end of the week.

Thank you so much!

Courtney Bambrick
Philadelphia Stories, Poetry Editor

On Poetry

In Poetry on May 6, 2014 at 10:44 am

Perhaps this title is misleading. I’d rather talk about my life. Perhaps I am trying to say that poetry is life. That’ll do. Poetry is life.

But editing is a motherfucker.

Your work has impressed me. That is to say it has left an impression on me. This won’t be a critique of anyone’s work. Just some observations about my editing process and ultimately the truth about my relationship with my own work.
For my first read through of work submitted, I thought I’d have to be critical. Some work would have to be bad, so other work could be good, right? Well…poems written with economy and utility in mind-that is to say, works that had a simple message and used as simple a language as could be found, were the ones that passed first muster. Others, with perhaps a rough or messy message-a not immediately clear message-again, I was critical. It was on these poems that I’d move on&into the language and start editing from there. But instead I grew despondent when I made the connection and turned the editorial and critical eye upon myself. Me&my work.
And so came the heavy, barbed question-what makes my work good? And, also, thee dreaded and most hated: Is my work good?
To keep up with the publishing schedule on here, I had to reach for surefire, simple works of simple message and language. Those poems, such as the “orphaned triplets” of D.C. Bloom, work for a reason. They get in and at you, speak it, say their peace and peace out. There aren’t any rediscoveries or further unwrapping. They’re like a song, and a good friend. You know who they are and you can visit them.
The obtuse ones, they live and breathe on their own. Their meaning can unwrap and reveal itself even while not in their presence. You go back and pick at it some more. You can’t tell what it is that has grabbed you or even if they have grabbed you at all. It’s just that you’re back. And you’ve been thinking about them.
It’s also true that some work did all of these things. Some work gave a knotty message in a simple way. And some went to the extreme of simply saying their truth and, for one poem in particular by Amelia Raun, it was such a beautiful truth.

Is my work good?
Oh boy is that a can of fucking worms.

Through you and the beautiful work you’ve submitted, I really had to examine my relationship to my work and further question the value of the inner critic. And personally, I’ve had to reevaluate the function of my Art. My Art, once and always a salve, but then I whipped the bad blues so I had no more nights to put in there, in that cold building and as a dayworker of desperation. Of course I felt like I had to create all those years, in order to survive and transform, understand pain and use it-or, mulch it into bitterness and use that. But without blues, well shit-I almost needed a problem. And personally it would have to be HARD, right? Isn’t that so my Friend?
To be authentic I’d have to suffer? The work would have to be bled and I would have to bleed it out. Scrutinize. Procrastinate. Get drunk. Jerk off. Fuck her even though I said we should be friends.

Maybe.
I snapped out of it. Took off the critic’s hat and got back to the task at hand. Editing. And what, as Editor, did I discover?
My work is good. And so is yours.
There are things that have proven to be effective when executing an Art form such as poetry. Such as narrative, point of view and/or interplay of pronouns and etc. For me, all that should serve to bring it all back home and make it something memorable that another (your audience) can take in and appreciate.
Other than that, how could I judge, really?

Some are wordsmiths. Some have the soul of a poet. Some have the soul of a poet but perhaps could use a deepening of their relationship to words, or-further consideration of the general relationship to words.

Some poems I have sat on only to find they were sitting on me. And some,like the the love irons by J.J. Duval, just fucking floored me from the gate. Brother Charlie O’Hay knocked it out of the park. Twice. And of course he did. The man is at it everyday. I love the reverent language of Bevan McShea and it may be because I know the man is living it. I have undying respect and love for Lamont Steptoe and we should all take heed-that all we are ever doing is standing on the shoulders of giants. Our ancestors and great men like him. My friendship with great writer Jason Woolery is a boon to me. The man gives me a shot in the arm every time I need it and his work is strong, well thought out and executed. And memorable. The Reverend Kevin P.O’Brien’s work still has the love and wonder I have always appreciated in his poetry; tinged with both the beauty and despair of annihilation. The bluntness and cunning, and what I like to call the “slow knife” of Salvatore Cerceo’s work gave Tsunami Dreams an unmistakable realness and menace. And Maureen Ferguson’s Pale Bellied Mourner is still flying around in my ribcage, her writing style tickles me to no end when picturing that sassy woman in the field with binoculars on and smoking an L&M.

All of the poetry submitted wasn’t written for intellectual reasons. Nor were their reasons simply of an artistic nature. Some held themselves up to that bar, in either language or creativity. But they’re all heartsongs. Songs of the heart. They’re all lamentations or meditations-spells, or otherwise imminent realizations. They’re all either creations or the raw materials needed to create. And they all have a truth.

I don’t have to assume an intellectual stance when editing heart songs. And I don’t have to find fault in your work or mine, in order for it to be good.
I’ve got everything I need. I know my work is good. I know it’s necessary. And I know, like everything, it’s a process. Your beautiful work and craftsmanship helped me realize this. And so much more. So ultimately, as editor (of your work and mine), I simply presented it.

Or, I didn’t.

Lastly, and most important-there’s a whole world spinning out there that has nothing to do with Art. Real creation happening every moment. It can be missed in a moment or for a lifetime. Especially when it’s gone. Especially when it’s gone. And that’s why poetry.

VOX POPULI VOX DEI
Trainer
Austin, TX

SEND YR POEMS, RANTS, MISSIVES&GENERAL CORRESPONDENCE
to:
Jim Trainer
EdItor, GFtT
jamesmichaeltrainer@gmail.com

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No Trouble With Jimbo

In Jim Trainer, Poetry on May 4, 2014 at 9:41 am

I don’t believe in God. Don’t believe in faith. I have no use for heaven but it’s nice to get a taste. Not only is hell real, but hell is a place! I’ve known the despairs of isolation, utter loneliness eating glass. I’m careful to say that I’ve been in Hell-considering what happens to the rest of the world every day. But I have been locked inside myself and on the outside of the roiling crowd for decades. Intimacy was the key. As King of Hearts. But now that the kingdom’s ruined and the prize has become sour&sullen, bourbon. Bourbon on a Sunday morning’s like chocolate cake on your deathbed. Like liquid wisdom of trees. Charcoal, like time, like darkness.

I never knew a greater love than the love I’ve had for the sun. Except for bourbon. Bourbon. Sex. New Orleans. Cormac McCarthy. The only thing American that I believe in. The blues. Robert Johnson. Son House. Cory Branan. Trouble eraser. Destroyer of pain. I don’t trust white-liquor drinkers. They’re crazy or bourgeoise. Or trying to be bourgeoise. Bourbon’s what you drink when you’re cleaning your guns. Bourbon’s what I’d be drinking with my Father but he’s a long time gone. Old Crow if you must?-but I’d rather drink beer. Bourbon sweet rust bangin ginst your liver, warming your whole body like Halloween. Bourbon doesn’t care if you’re a writer or a dayworker like your dad. Bourbon will help you be mean to her.

Bourbon is pomade and rock&roll. Bourbon steals your innocence. And you love it. Not the high flat trumpet of beer. Not the soaking malaise of red wine. Not the socialite light Sunday party full of gabbing, cloying Bettys. Bourbon’s what the men drink, far from the kitchen, far from the demands of mother. A brown flaming jewel. A good reason to be human if only to forget your humanity. You flee the circus lights. The town shrinks to flea size but you got the world in a pea shooter. And a tumbler glass.

Heaven is a place where I drink bourbon in the morning. And the birds don’t care, not that they ever do, and the construction crews-conscripted by law-are quiet now, and the whore of this city-New Austin-shuts the fuck up for a while and a brother like me gets a taste. Yeah. A brother like me gets a taste.

In vino veritas? Ha fucking ha. Bourbon’s why I can look at you. And lie to you like you want me to.

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