:: Article

Three Poems

By Robert Louis Henry.

Local Folk Art

Local folk art
like ladybug mailboxes
and REPENT on
a telephone pole
giant aluminum crosses
near the adult stores
and knee-high crucifixes
to mark where
their daughter was
killed while waiting
for the school bus.
He still drives fast
on that road,
and jokes about
the banjos gettin’

And local folk art
like the collection of
telephone poles
arranged like a
at that trailer
that burned down.
Not the meth dealer
or the meth dealer
across from the meth dealer,
but the one past the dam,
and the red barn.


Dandridge has at
least forty cemeteries,
six churches, and two
rickety bars. The drugstore
has a classic soda fountain,
and it’s considered an attraction.

Down the road from it
you’re on the highway
with its chains of banks
and franchises of foods
exactly like every other
half-developed city.

Near the lake there’s
a restaurant that a
professional wrestler
bought for his mother,
and it’s considered an attraction.

But I’ve been there,
it’s just seafood.

A Loaded Deck

As a child
I had religious
playing cards

I’ve recently found
the Jesus-Jacks
and wonder what
the other faces are.

I imagine it goes
Jesus, Mary, Holy Ghost, God
because my mom’s family is Catholic

But it might go
Jesus, Crucifix Jesus, Holy Ghost, God
since my dad’s family is Baptist.

Robert Louis Henry lives in Tennessee; he’s studying music production. His poetry can be found in The Delinquent, The CommonLine Project, Unlikely 2.0 and other online and print magazines. He’s an editor at Leaf Garden Press.

First published in 3:AM Magazine: Tuesday, May 5th, 2009.