Strange Fruits

September 9, 2015

Last night I had the strangest dream. Marty Luthie King, a hillbilly from Tennessee appeared to me and foretold the future.

“Gene, I have a dream—and since y’all are dreaming, that makes it a dream within a dream. Extra Large Kim—that is her name, ELK for short . . . will emerge from a jail cell and lead us to the Promised Land. Meanwhile, Governor Mike Hicklebee will take her place in that old Kentucky jail. He will fast and live on his fat for two years.

“And Extra Large Kim will dance to ‘Eye of the Tiger’ and praise White Jesus. And homosexuals will tremble, because ELK is not afraid to call a spade a spade and a homo a homo and a liberal a traitor and a Jew a Christ killer and an Episcopalian the Auntie Christ.

“It is time that the Extra Large Pasty People get their due. It is time that we retreat into the Stone Age, when there was no science, no global anything, when ‘gay’ meant happy-go-lucky, not hippy-go-lucky, when women were women and precious girls sat and squirmed on their uncles’ laps and Cooter was the most popular name and Pat Boone was the greatest musician of all time.

“Are you with me, Gene? You are well on your way to Extra Large. Will you go all the way? Will you conceal and carry something beside your penis? Will you march with righteous men that are the proud, meth-addicted descendants of Confederate soldiers and help catch all them pesky black people and return them to Tara? Will you slap Japs, put down browns, skew the Jews, muslin the Muslims?

“Dare to dream the dream within the dream within the Extra Large Dream, Gene! Give me your tired, your poor, your humbled, your wretched white people yearning to breathe free!

“And behold, Extra Large Kim administering sense and sensibility (ELKASS) stepping forward, her pendulous (according to her three ex-husbands) tits and with them, smiting the Kenyan Obama tit for tat, and leading the unwashed toward Calvary, all of us trampling toward Jerusalem and . . . Wait. If we’re all in Israel . . . who minds the store?

“Ted Cruz for President!”

I awoke screaming. Marty Luthie King, it seems, was just a bit of undigested beef. “We’re not in Illinois anymore,” I told Scout the Cat.

Somehow I had driven us to Kentucky in my sleep. A car caravan was approaching on a dirt road, one of the vehicles a hatchback, and hanging on a cross rising out of the hatchback was a naked Kim Davis, dying for our sins.

It was the new, regressed, improved America, and I was the old reprobate Gene, agnostic, tolerant of sin and degradation. As the caravan passed, Kim Davis Christ Superstar farted. It smelled like huckleberries.

I thought of “Huckleberry Hound,” of Annette Funicello, of Captain Kangaroo, of “Our Miss Brooks,” of “Strange Fruit” (black folks hanging from trees), of homosexuals being beaten, of The Bomb.

I did an impression for Scout the Cat, of Louis Armstrong singing, “It’s a Wonderful World.” And we drove back to Illinois.

Oh yeah.

About Eugene Jones Baldwin

I am a writer: non-fiction, fiction, journalism (Alton Telegraph), essays (The Genehouse Chronicles) and have a website: I've published a couple dozen short stories and had eleven plays produced. Current projects: "Brother of the Stones" (available on Kindle), a book of short stories; "The Faithful Husband of the Rain, short stories"; "A Black Soldier's Letters Home, WWII,;" "There is No Color in Justice," a commentary on racism; "Ratkillers," a new play. I am an avocational archaeologist and I take parts of my collection of several thousand Indian artifacts (personal finds) to schools, nature centers, libraries etc. and talk about the 20,000 year history of The First people in Illinois. (See link to website) I'm also a playwright (eleven plays produced), musician, historian (authority on the Underground Railroad in Illinois, the Tuskegee Airmen) and teacher.
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