Give Us A Kiss
A Country NoirBook - 1996
From the critics
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That night, when he dropped me back in Lawrence, he'd said," Baby bro, don't it seem most everything you'n me do together we have to run from?" "Yeah. Or deny under oath, at least." "Uh-huh. Us Redmond boys, we're a good match." "Now and then," I said. "And always for reasons."
Such shacks pock our region, hatching batches of children the regular world will have to deal with down the line. These wild kids are reared on baloney and navy beans, corn much and Kool-Aid, and quick, terrible rough stuff. Their lips are circled by orange or red or green juice stains and their knees and elbows generally have scabs on them from two or three scrapes at recess. All they ever know is that they want, and someday they'll learn you got, and after that the rest is sirens and statistics and nods from the wall of dead.
The exposed meat of the coyote showed signs of having been pecked and torn at by all manner of lesser creatures who would have fled before the beast when he lived. I guess I sensed the message but I didn't rightly absorb it.
The law had come nosing around for Smoke again, and Mom and General Jo asked if I wouldn't go back down home, find my big brother and talk some sense at him. The Kansas City law had a serious warrant, and, really, truth was on their side, but us Redmonds have never been the sort of bloodline who'll give our kin up easy to the penitentiary. It is one of our legends of our hillbilly selves, our heritage and genetic demeanor, that we don't truckle before authority.
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