Death of Levon Helm Alt Country Blues Poem

I'm washed up and the tribe is thinning.

Lunch can be hit or miss — either way

if I'm not hungry afterward

what's to complain about?

Turns out extinction is not the issue,

not if the formats are steeped in formaldehyde

and there is a regular circus.

I'm worried when I get the box home

I'll have two shoes for one foot and none

for the other which will make me walk in circles

like the groupies around Robbie Robertson

in 1969 must have.

Summer came in ahead of spring this year.

Funny how we all just take it lying down.

No one has the guts to switch out the months.

Drum up some reaction, however screwy —

call April August, March June —

give notice we noticed.

— Sharon Black

Sharon Black lives in Wallingford. She is widely published in such journals as The South Carolina Review, Cimarron Review, Slipstream, Alaska Quarterly Review, Mudfish, Rhino, Poet Lore, Artful Dodge, and Painted Bride Quarterly. Her poetry was nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2005 and 2007. She is the librarian at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania.