Poetry by Jack Henry
113 pages
Epic Rites Press, 2011

Crunked was not written. Not even close, not even for a second. Crunked was ripped from the very darkest, most sinister portion of my brain. Written over the course of seventy-two hours, Crunked is the full realization of who and what I had become at that point in time. I started putting the words down after a sixty-six hour high, words that spilled out like a stuck pig or a slashed femoral artery. When I came up for air after sleeping twenty-four hours, I read the thing, typed it up and put it in a box. This bitch should never see light, or so I thought. It is something so raw and so personal I didn’t want to publish it. I still don’t, but some spark tells me I should. Crunked is a nothing more than a narrative. It’s neither cautionary nor celebratory, it just exists as a document of experience.”
– Jack Henry, April 2011


speed doesn’t do
i hoped it would

it doesn’t
pay bills
or mop floors
or bring me flowers when
i vomit on the couch

it makes my dick susceptible
to changing weather conditions
what good is fucking,
if you can’t make it to the end?

out of the gate, i knew the need would build
would become more become more
become more
but i’m not there yet

speed makes my mind nimble
makes me breathe as if content
before i fuck away tomorrow

you know she is a whore
when she only fucks
for money

day becomes night
becomes day before another
and i risk it all
when i taste another bump

i’m not yet a slave
and too scared
to become true reckless

yet i will continue
my illustrious affair

my pathos dance lingers
well after the band refuses
to play on

“Jack Henry does not posture, boast, or pretend that he plumbs the depths of the human soul – he just does it.”
– David McLean, author of Cadaver’s Dance

heroin hand me downs

heroin hand me downs
linger near windows
shopping for product
they come – two by two

breeders and chasers
gather in clutches
dealing against death
the devil takes his time

i want for connection
last stop redemption
a guy i know as Bobby
makes his approach

five tiny bindles
angels in sunshine
i pay with the rent
techno-bebop plays live

hookers in corsets
wait for acceptance
trade blowjobs for passage
night seems to thrive

my mistress lay waiting
white line simulation
my cock suddenly eager
the clock begins to slow

three days no sleeping
royalty check payoff
i keep throwing snake eyes
and swimming in sin



i am an addict
a liar
a borrower of false anticipation

i deny my own implication
bent to the glory of your rope


i am a leper
a pilgrim
a corpse lost in a rotting sea

i dance in fire circles
i remember how to breathe


i am science
lost in sun and sand

when they toll an august church bell
there’s nothing left of me

“… I’ve been reading through Crunked, and I’m really, really impressed. You know, I think that you may be the poet laureate of meth culture. I’m not being funny – I think you really captured the surreal and extreme nature of the way of the speed freak, and that the poems veer between being heartbreakingly sad and really, blackly funny. It’s really good stuff, very powerful.”
– Tony O’Neill, author of Down and Out on Murder Mile

this is how it works

you go on-line,
create a profile,
upload a picture,
preferably nude,
preferably hard

sometimes it’s quick,
some days longer
a hit comes with abbreviations
code that you know

PNP equals crystal, meaning party
fucking high and unprotected

you show up, small talk,
slight confirmation,
he offers you favors,
this is how it works

depending on passion
it might start with kissing
you work your way down
suck on his cock

more dope
more vein blood fire
he fucks your ass
no concern for anything

except the next high

“Jack Henry sent me the Crunked manuscript in 2008. It wasn’t a submission intended for publication and, by Henry’s admission at the time, it wasn’t material that he felt comfortable releasing. It was merely sent to gauge my reaction and to get my opinion about whether or not the poems worked together as a whole. My reaction to the material was along the same lines as the first time I watched Tobe Hooper’s 1974 horror masterpiece The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: shocked, mortified and speechless. I immediately wrote Henry to say that the manuscript was fantastic and that despite his reservations about its release, I’d love to publish the book through Epic Rites Press. Henry politely declined. I said that my invitation was an open one. The manuscript sat in my desk for almost three years. In late 2010 Henry gave me the green light to proceed with the project. Now, in 2011, Henry’s Crunked will finally see the light of day. As far as I’m concerned, it’s about damn time! Crunked is one of those rare books that should be read by everyone.”
– Wolfgang Carstens, editor/publisher, Epic Rites Press

Poetry by Jack Henry
ISBN 978-1-926860-01-5

Available for advance ordering now at

Published in: on April 24, 2011 at 6:47 pm  Comments Off on Crunked  
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