Read “In a Knoxville Hotel Room with Luke The Drifter” from the upcoming poetry book ‘Just The Night Birds’

From my upcoming book ‘Just The Night Birds’ ( to preorder) out October 2nd. Dan Mock and I played Knoxville a few times, never went to this hotel though where Hank Williams stayed briefly the night of his death. This poem was born out of the struggles that can come with being on the road too long, which comes in different forms for different people. Mine was usually anxiety mixed with exhaustion and a few too many drinks. Luke The Drifter was Hank’s pseudonym for his songs focusing on religion and/or philosophizing about life. They usually had a moral at the end of the story.


I was in a Knoxville hotel room Saw Luke The Drifter Laying on my bed in a drunken stupor “Be careful of stones that you throw” Singing in a ghostly and shaky tone When I reached to touch him You called me on the phone Said, “I need to talk with you I had a nightmare too real You were living like Hank Williams Gobbling little pills Chasing them down with liquor and Falstaff beer Saying that you never seen Jesus closer Than in this rearview mirror”