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By Don Kerr

Don Kerr understands prairie tradition higher than so much -- he is familiar with itfrom the interior out. He has made us conscious of ourselves via hisnumerous volumes of poetry, his fiction, his many performs, his histories,and his curiosity in history. during this mature, comprehensive collection,we can once more respect his exact prairie voice -- minimalist,self-effacing, direct but sophisticated and nuanced, immersed in his love ofthe vernacular language of this position. His line is muscular, his timingimpeccable, his sweep with so few phrases exemplary.

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Indd 62 06/08/10 12:43 PM where are we going next year? bad highway out of Richdale \ 63 makes Saskatchewan drivers feel right at home the Hanna escarpment says the days of the prairie are numbered the valley of the Red Deer is at hand clouds in our heaven cool with mountain air we surround our old friend on two sides and we are where we were meant to be Graham, give me my pillow. It’s a chicken. Give me my chicken. It’s a turkey. Graham! You have to pay fifteen, thirty, eighty thousand dollars.

Indd 48 06/08/10 12:43 PM body poems II, the black poet 1. indd 49 06/08/10 12:43 PM 50 / 2. kill speak kill speak, she said, kill speak and take me to bed oh I’m too timid, I said, too timid to take you to bed life, she said, is so bloody bad I had a devil for a dad I’m too timid I said, too timid to take you to bed I’ve a body a devil can love a body ripe for that guy up above I’ve a mind that believes in God and a body that tries to be good I’ve two breasts and a hungry cunt come aboard and join in the hunt sweet Lord protect me I ask you please sweet Lord before I fall to my knees kill speak me baby, she said, kill speak and take me to bed I never learned kill speak, he said, shall I kill self to enter your bed?

Kill speak kill speak, she said, kill speak and take me to bed oh I’m too timid, I said, too timid to take you to bed life, she said, is so bloody bad I had a devil for a dad I’m too timid I said, too timid to take you to bed I’ve a body a devil can love a body ripe for that guy up above I’ve a mind that believes in God and a body that tries to be good I’ve two breasts and a hungry cunt come aboard and join in the hunt sweet Lord protect me I ask you please sweet Lord before I fall to my knees kill speak me baby, she said, kill speak and take me to bed I never learned kill speak, he said, shall I kill self to enter your bed?

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