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Tennessee Highway Death Chant (Paperback) (Keegan Jennings Goodman)
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In a purgatory at the banks of the Hiwasee River in Southeastern Tennessee, two teenagersthe garrulous John Stone and the young Jenny Evenenebarrel through an endless night in a Firebird Trans Am. Jenny wakes each morning, the same morning, and chronicles the events of her final day, her memory reaching back into the recesses of mythical time, recollecting cosmogonies, eschatologies, and metamorphoses that mingle with the details of her violent end. As the two heroes drive through the night, drinking cold American beer and listening to the soothing tunes of the country music station, the dramatis personae of the process of decomposition encroach upon them from the darkness beyond the headlights: the turkey vultures that soar above them, baited by decaying corpses, are at once the successors of the sacred buzzard whose talons first massaged the earth into being and the double of the screaming chicken emblazoned on the hood of the Firebird, which is itself at once the illustrious automobile of teenage dreams, vehicle of transmigrating souls, and ancient phoenix, millennial sigil of the sun, of biochemical resurrections, and Heraclitean thunderbolt who steers all things.