Amador County Festival, by Tim Kahl

Dance around the tarantula in the grass during the encore
after all the giant turkey legs have vanished.
Throw back a plastic glass of mead and submit to
the beat the best way anyone could imagine.
One of the vendors has already revealed how to
snatch a concrete dragon from a poured mold, how to
make an axe, how to battle with a grappling hook.
The cannon fires. . .then the duo sings their
sweet harmonies, one guitar with a handkerchief tied
around its neck as night arrives destined from an older place.


Tim Kahl is the author of five books of poems, most recently Omnishambles (Bald Trickster 2019) and California Sijo (Bald Trickster 2022). He is also an editor of Clade Song. He builds flutes, plays them, and plays guitars, ukuleles, charangos, and cavaquinhos as well. He currently teaches at California State University, Sacramento, where he sings lieder while walking on campus between classes. Learn more at and