Cocaine and Gold - Believer Magazine
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Cocaine and Gold

by Roger Reeves
Illustration by Kelly Belter

Cocaine and Gold

Roger Reeves
90 Snaps
  I never wanted to be this far
Into the business of heaven
                          Chasing my father hunting
              His soul in the corn and confusion of this harvest


                              My father who is hidden
In the last sheaf of heaven maybe
          Heaven itself
          My father the corn-wolf


          Who we must kill but is already dead
          We will learn nothing
Here of sacrifice or the cocaine
          Of beauty my hands


          Chattering in eulogy
          Which is a search for beauty
            Which is nothing but 
          The elimination of beauty by artifice


          By artifice we cauterize
My father’s drifting life
        A minor cosmetic surgery
          Like liposuction a funeral is


        An elimination of nature by artifice
By artifice do you repeat yourself
        Very well then I repeat
      Myself as heaven as a golden harvest

  As a broken ocean of corn
                         The search for beauty is
        The elimination of death 
                                         Which requires dying


            Which is the business of farming
                    Which no one cares to do
                    Anymore in America
                                       And like dying we’d rather rent it out

                       Freedom without freedom
            To hold your dying father up
                    To a razor beneath a golden light
            And cut him finally in and out of the world




This poem is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

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