Rednecks in Zen*


We was sittin on the porch
outside a Chester’s whittlin
toothpicks outta logs.
I looks at Jake’n says,

What’s up with BobbieSue anyways?

Whatcha mean? (says Jake)

I thought we wuz pretty tight
but but she don’t come round
when she says she’s gonna
an she’s goin out with some other ole boy
I ain’t evenever met.

You say somethin to ‘er bout it?

I called’er thother night, but
she was makin a marble cake
an had to let me go so’s she
could go find some marbles*.

She’s fickle boy!

Fickle? Whaddayathink I orta do?

Well son, know that tractor we got we use
fer hayrides won’t stay in third gear?


Do we try’n fix it?

Ain’t worth fixin.

Gets the job done anyways, right?

Well, yeah.

Well son, it’s like any piece
of farm equipment–

you gotta let a tractor* be a trractor,
an let a hoe* be a hoe.

*Zen — a school of Buddhism that asserts that enlightenment can be attained through meditation, contemplation, and intuition rather than through scripture
*marbles — small balls used in children’s games
*tractor — an automotive vehicle designed for pulling machinery
*hoe — a tool with a flat blade and a long handle, used for weeding, gardening, cultivating, and gardening

Originally published in The Portable Wall