Wolf and Weedwhacker

by Chad Davidson

Behind the hateful hedge, the whine:
wine of my thirsting, winter pine.
The whacker whacks your head
against the ground or side of a shed
ox-blood red, takes he your tongue—
a spry, one-legged thing—against the bottom rung
of any tired ladder-work of briar.
You, the illiterate deaf. I, the town crier
come with word from the front in front
of the hedge. Weedwhacker, my ubi sunt,
where went the salad days where we went
tongueless into green garages, spent
nights among the oval lakes of oil. Rainbow,
my target, my arrow in a shameless bow:
maroon me on the moon of your Craftsman-red head.

O weedwhacker: whack, howl to the dead
and yeasted rye, shorn necks of bluegrass.
Ask no relief but give them shelter. Amass them,
throaty harvester. They are your eyes.
Do you see? We belong on two separate isles,
this hateful hedge wedged between.
Bottlenecking is no message then, the sheen
of two-stroke this wan, wolf gang’s prayer:
that you easily tear apart what was never there.

Chad Davidson is an assistant professor of English at the State University of West Georgia. His poems have appeared in Colorado Review, Crab Orchard Review, DoubleTake, Epoch, The Paris Review, Pequod, Poet Lore, and numerous other publications. Southern Illinois Press published his first book, Consolation Miracle in 2003.