March 2005 / Volume VI / Issue II
Jason Floyd Williams
born again, and again.

Sometimes it might take
several falls from grace for
a man to get-up
& learn.

Take for instance my 2nd cousin,
Lloyd. I believe his heavy drinking
began while he & my grandfather were
birthing a new roofing company down
in Tennessee.
Lloyd & my granddad would soak-up
their share of booze
& become familiar w/ the
indigenous locals.
The stories of Lloyd's dose
of the crabs, Wilma's (of
Nashville's Bonnie & Clyde knock-offs:
Elvis & Wilma) aquarium moss-green teeth
& my grandfather nearly being molested
by a truck of a woman running a
Pon farr fever, have matured
into family mythology &
still reach me as an adult.

So, Lloyd began to drink
earlier & earlier until he didn't
need an alarm-clock
to buzz his brain into consciousness,
the impulse for beer beat
the clock to it.

This is how I remember him as a kid:
A kinda bloated, reddy, Hacksaw Jim Duggan
w/ blue foam bra around a Milwaukee's Best.

This is how he almost died.

I'll tell you, his liver punched-out
to Cirrhosis & he was put
on Dialysis briefly.

I was betting he'd die.
We all were.

But he managed to quit boozin,
started to attend A.A. meetings,
and his liver, well, bless its meaty lil      
regenerative skills, began to heal.

If only it ended here:
The CBS Thanksgivings special where
Dolly Parton goes home w/ Kenny Rogers
& they produced a legion of
new country singin babies.

Nah, they both started acting careers & get distracted
& Lloyd finds his wife at home, already half-stewed,
w/ a fifth of whiskey in front of her.
And an empty seat next to her.