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Revisionist History - Keith Hoerner

$10,000 down Gets you in Your choice of Ranch or two-story In prestigious Nooning Tree

“Is there one, a Nooning Tree?” “Of course,” the saleslady answers Loose strands of hair catching The corner of her mouth Like a lie

Tempered by talk of tradition She motions; I follow Slipping on the deceptively Green sod Outside her display home

She points, arm outstretched Fingers fanning In a ta-da moment “There … The Nooning Tree”

Under that very shade (weather permitting) Noon meals were served To plantation workers Every day

Quaint, now, isn’t it?”

Yes, if It were true

If *only* it were *true* For a few of us Still know fact from fiction About this suburbanized 183-year-old black walnut

Its gnarled branches Leafingthroughsecrets

Midday laughter filtered Not Through this centurion’s autumnal rush Frenetic excitement hung thick in the air Frozen families, slack-jawed gawkers, jeering landlords *gathered*

On what is now Premium Lot 241 (backing to woods) Where a barbarian’s buffet Was laid

Bulging Blood-shot eyes Subtle smells of rope- Burned flesh Slaves *lynched* on the strike of *noon*

On a *tree* On A Bountiful S t r e t c h o f L a n d


Keith Hoerner (BS, MFA) lives, teaches, and pushes words around in Southern Illinois. He is published frequently in lit journals like decomP, Fiction Kitchen Berlin, and Litro—to name just a few. He is founding editor of the Webby Award recognized Dribble Drabble Review, and his memoir, The Day the Sky Broke Open, is a recent Best Book and American Writing Award Finalist.

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