Singing along with Mellencamp’s ‘I Need a Lover that Wont Drive Me Crazy’ by N.S. Boone

Photo of muscle car
Photo by Tyler Clemmensen on Unsplash

Speeding between the endless fields of corn and beans
70 . . . 75 . . . “This old junker might make it to 80” . . .
Some girl who knows the meaning of, uh, ‘Hey hit the highway!’
I sang it, shouting it, shoulders and head rocking.

I was cradled between those cornfields so well
I could love the song and the singing
and feel secure, even when speeding,
so that the world would blur into color and sound
as I jetted on my desires.

Yet behind the words were the truths all singers know:
seeds don’t always stay where they’re planted,
the tallest cornstalks can’t reach the sky,
and there never was a lover who wasn’t crazy.


N.S. Boone
N.S. Boone’s academic essays range from scholarship on D.H. Lawrence, Mark Twain, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and E.A. Poe, to Homer, the Book of Revelation, and the seventeenth-century vegetarian Thomas Tryon. He’s also written on the poetry of William Carlos Williams, Jorie Graham, Rita Dove, Mark Strand, and more. He’s published poems in Georgetown Review, Cave Region Review, St. Austin Review, and elsewhere. He likes to fish and preach.

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