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Julie Ruble
Julie Ruble

Date of Birth: 4/20
Location: Charlotte, NC
Publications: supralurid, Poetry Super Highway

and jamie wouldn't eat her dinner.


used to be kids
ran out of beer and fell
down by fences.
fingered child abuse and
pretended we'd go away
if your car wasn't such
a gasguzzler.

you are my little one.
if you're tired . . .
if you're hungry . . .

farming 101
we ain't blending in.
he stands at the foot
of the bed, pulls his shirt
off, his jeans. it's dark
out over fields and he holds me;
i tell him
i threw all our dreams away.

the big drawer full of them.
except the hogs,
i tell him we still got the hogs.

(there was a time when dreams meant
more to us than mortgages; there was a time
when we were going to name our little girl
savannah and hogs weren't pretty)

he smells like grass, worry lines
creeping through bigtoughman.
i intercept him.
the mailbox fell off
its post today
and we ain't got nothin no more
but the hogs.
tell him we still got
the hogs (i intercept
him, struggling to maintain
a tired erection. tell him
we don't have to tonight
(if you're tired . . .
if you're hungry . . . )
and he cries while it softens,
says . . . he ain't got nothin.)
he turns over and pretends he's asleep
but i hear the groan of the bed
at four thirty when he gets up to make sure
he's still got his kids;
his hogs, stuck securely on
his cardboard this-ain't-what-i-had-in-mind


if you're tired.
if you need more.
if you're done here.
if you're scared.
if you're angry,

if it's me.
if it's time.
if it's the color of wyoming hey
if it's here,

if it's never going to end.

we don't have to tonight.


he came in the shower in the morning.
just to prove he could. it was angry,
exploding, still tired, against slippery
walls. i heard him punch the shower curtain.
i heard him hit his knees when
it was over.