photoart: ralph murre
by Candace Hennekens
My husband doesn’t want to move
from the front row at the tractor
pulling contest in the community park.
I feel like a picked dandelion
drooping in a juice glass.
I worry that my feet in sandals
will burn without sun block.
My scalp sweats under my cotton hat.
My lips feel dry, my throat parched.
I’m hotter than a desert rock in
He says I don’t need to sit there.
So, I beat a retreat to the beer tent
sit and relax at a table, comparing
notes with two old farmers about
how hot we are. Suddenly I am hit
by a rush of feelings about being married.
I am inclined to like it. After a while,
I buy chicken dinners, cold pops,
give my husband his and return
to my spot in the tent. Eating
and drinking, I listen to the announcer
but I watch my husband, enjoying
our bond. Suddenly he stands up, comes
my way, saying we can leave anytime I want.
We meander past the tractor pull, stop
to watch a John Deere slowly without
drama pull the weight wagon all the way
to the end of the track. That’s a winner,
my husband says. Then we leave
to go back home where I can be cool.
~ first published in Rosebud