Cody Badaracca: Sludge


Give me some swamp
water. I want the harsh
ebb and flow of emotion
lost in the fuzz of distortion that’s
like Cicadas bellowing into a hot June
night. Give me that whiskey
heated growl that sounds like
Howlin’ Wolf – broken glass
dragged over hot asphalt. The snap
and twang. The scratching feed
back up to the wall with a dense fog
of smoke getting musty. The pauses hanging
down like Spanish Moss in the trees.

It is song drenched in humidity and the spook
of tall tales. It is
thick and tarry like the dregs of chicory-coffee
that some goddamn hoodoo mama would read fortunes in
with a scattering of dried chicken bones
and a handful of paprika.

Crawling at a reptilian pace, it is un-obsessed death
like the black snake in the corn field, swallowing you inch
by inch, drowning you in the mighty riff
like the drag of an undertow.
The buzz getting so loud that all other noise muffle
like muted struggles of a gator with its prey
going into the death rolls
in the heavying silence
of the bayou.