“Tornado,” by Jack Hirschman, from A Correspondence of Americans (1960)



Amid shambles blown, blown pages of a Gideon,
A farmer with a pitchfork stepped
Before the microphone and said it was a huge
Black arm did it, come sweeping across
The tabletop plain, grizzly, on a binge.

His wife, kind of scared and something shy
Of things stuck right before your face
To talk into, was in the distant field
Pecking at the wreckage of a moviehouse
Fallen out of the sky, for pans.

And still agog, the kid in overalls
Was dancing on shingles, leaping
From tree to tree, his blond crop fluttering,
Yelling to all the buried farmboys
About the swinging tail of the dragon that snapped.

from A Correspondence of Americans, by Jack Hirschman
Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1960

Available on the Internet Archive: Link

This is one in a series of neglected poems taken from the Internet Archive.

Leave a Comment