When Fault Lines was published, a then-colleague, an award winning younger poet, noted it was clear that I knew nothing about what he termed the “po-biz” and that it was equally clear that I had not been reading the right blogs. Reflecting on my woeful naiveté led to some of the work in Redneck Yoga.
In “Today the Poem,” Poem wanders about, clearly all too oblivious to the Po-Biz. In “You Might Be” the reflections on what might or might not be entailed in being a redneck are, alas, not informed by any respectable academic theory, whether post this or post that. These two lack of directions are developed more fully in The Tao of Twang and Poem’s Poems & Other Poems, in which some of the pieces from this chapbook reappear.
The figure on the cover, by the way, is demonstrating the first position of Redneck Yoga—Downward Facing Log. I have yet, in spite of extensive research, managed to discover the second position.
The fiddle on the cover belonged to Byrd Hunt, 1856-1947, who used it to play many a Grange Hall dance in the Lake County region of California and once ventured all the way to San Francisco to appear on Mac and his Gang, Haywire Mac McClintock’s radio show for children on KFRC. I imagine him playing his go to number for the younger set, “Froggie Went a Courtin’,” backed ably by Mac and His Haywire Orchestry. So far as I know, Byrd did not keep up with blogs, either.
Tim Hunt’s Redneck Yoga is a breath of fresh air and a joy to read. He tells his OWN story in his own special way, and you can’t do better than that.
His affection and understanding of the hidden beauty of the American underground vernacular of the 1950s honors the voices of those long-gone denizens of the night whose scatting stretched the language and whose special energy changed America.
Just like Dante in his Terza Rima and Kerouac in his flights of fancy, Tim Hunt paints us a portrait of our surroundings and makes you want to celebrate life and write a poem yourself. – David Amram
How can something be so genuine and at the same time smack you upside the head with its sarcasm? If you mean what you say, can it still be facetious and sardonic? Tim Hunt’s collection of poems tells it like it is with a pure American tongue. He balances the elegance of a true poet’s pen with a sometimes playful, sometimes barbed commentary on our way of life. Poetry is alive and well in the U.S. thanks to Tim Hunt’s imagery, Americana, and his acerbic wit. – Larry Joe Campbell