In this America deer is not game and squirrel is to eat. In this America hunger is never in season or out of. but is. In this place the game warden knows who hunts for game and those who hunt food. * In this America the trophy wife fucks the pool boy. They do not screw or make love. He plays the part. He doesn’t matter. In this America Pleasure is not meaning. * In this America the body is a page: the mermaid’s black hair braiding the green kelp floating from the wrist. And studs & piercings— tongue, nose, nipples and dick. In this America beauty is skin deep, a mystery of runes & hieroglyphs. And all advertising the truth. * In this America the clichés are all true—real as casino dollars, dice & spinning slot machines. In the fluorescence of this America, everything glitters: the pole dancer’s sequined thong, her smile, the bottles behind the bar, the gold chains around his neck. In this America— Everyone a winner. * In this America, the mountain has pulled the coverlet of snow over its shoulder. It is inscrutable or would be if one looked up. * In this America the sun peels the once bright paint from the drift of single wide trailers at the bend in the creek beyond the end of the county road where those who are beyond The End of the Road watch the sun peel the once bright paint. * In this America the God of this America is somewhere speaking in tongues and the Chosen who hear Him through his writhing vessels know the Truth of the words they believe they understand. In this America God has come unto us as a Snake and we pass Him hand to hand because He surpasses all understanding as we tremble in fear—flesh of His flesh. In this America God lives in a Crystal Cathedral and all are blessed in electronic vision and fill the imagined offering plate with real dollars week after week to be healed and sanctified through the Power and Glory of Preacher Bob who is His humble servant. In this America the God of this America walks on electronic water and turns the water into Champagne. And most wondrous of all, in this America, this God can turn our Fear into Hate and we shall call it Love and Righteousness Unto The End of Time in the Glory of His Power which is our fear that we Are not, alas, truly sinners but only lost in some Wilderness that truly doth surpass all understanding. * In this America Daddy takes his Son to the titty bar and out to fish. Momma takes Missy to the Laundromat. Missy has lace panties & Momma cotton. Daddy likes lace. * In this America, the old woman sitting in the back room no longer remembers the names for the faces that come through the door but remembers the dust between her toes on the walk to school and the feel of flour sacking over her hips, and cool buttermilk after a bite of cornbread. In this America the game show voices on the TV are not there as she listens to her brothers and sisters splashing in the creek, as she splashes in the creek as she is there, is then. * In this America, America means everything just like “cool” and “dope” and “bees knees razzmatazz.” America—Now Fortified with Vitamin Liberty. Pass me The America. Things Go Better With America. America: The Fall Collection. The Season Finale. Dancing With America. America’s Got America. I’ve got big hands and My America’s bigger than your America. This Sunday Attend the America of your choice. * In this America, children have guns, and clean water is a lead pipe cinch. In this America you die fast or slow. You choose. Oh, Freedom! And remember: pledge your allegiance, cause there’s liberty and justice for all. * In this America a man’s Truck is his castle. In this America, a woman’s Place is in the home after her shift at the All-Nite diner out by the Interstate as she rustles up your breakfast and brews your coffee. Ah, put a little sugar in that, Darlin’. * In this America, he and she both know every bed in the No Tell Motel, and as he lets her pretend she doesn’t, he watches as she offers a third eye wink, bending to slide her jeans to the floor and humming “Stand By Your Man.” * In this America, America is the name we give this somewhere we call America as if all other somewheres mustn’t exist. * In this America Duck Dynasty is not a joke ’cause reality is Reality TV and hick chic is not a schtick and nuthin’ says Don’t Tread on Me like Camo, some chaw, and that nice T-Bone on the propane grill. * After school Daddy always takes his baby doll for an ice cream after he lets her do their special secret— the one she mustn’t tell because only they understand. She likes vanilla with Rainbow Bright sprinkles. He wipes her chin and takes her home. He watches her walk into her room and close the door. Tomorrow they will again be redeemed. Tomorrow he will buy her ice cream, vanilla with Rainbow Bright sprinkles. * In this America we live as if name and place still marked us as real in that litany of Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins: of who cleaved unto who and who begat who and who fell into a darkness so that their Name became a silence as if they had not been. In this America there is still an Old Testament of the stories you once heard but no one tells them. * In this America we turn each week to America’s Biggest Loser. Oh, Rachel and Zeke, George and Amanda, we pray for you that you might take our pounds away. We bless you for having stories to tell and idolize you for seeming real. And we believe, Oh truly, that the camera and screen could make us real in your image, Oh flesh of our flesh, the Power and Glory and Amen, the losing forever. * In this America you can not use food stamps for beer and smokes. In this America meat is not enough. * In this America we believe in the Word of the Founding Fathers as if our fingers have traced the graven stone, our faith strong in the chain of he saids that he saids that they Said as the Word speaks to us on talk radio so that we do truly know the Word that the Fathers must have said. And it doth proclaim Thou shalt be a Christian nation and Thou shalt have the right to dangle an AK47 across your chest and stride into the Walmart of your choice and all the women shall follow thee up and down the aisles of your shopping cart with eyes damp with submission as you lead them into that promised land of your bidding, the bondage that shall make them free, and they shall worship thee in the faith that you believe in the Word of the Founding Fathers as you have heard that Word— the truth, white and pure. The truth that shall save us from the black letters of what was once written that would betray us into a wilderness of words. * In this America, the woman in the stiletto boots and designer jeans with the curlicue stitching as if tattoos on her perfect pilates ass, the silk blouse all bordello frill, and cute cowboy hat has come here to be authentic—as if Dale Evans bought her costumes in Paris and didn’t know the difference between what you wore on the set and wore on the ranch. Sipping her latté she looks at the hills as if they are a painting. She likes to think of the horses running in the pasture, sun dappled and sleek. She doesn’t like you—your boots work worn, your truck work worn, you work worn. She likes the picture better without you. She wishes you’d move away, but where could you go, in this America that is her America—the one that no longer seems to be yours.