“Together in the Back Yard” by Jack Ridl

Jack Ridl


—an artwork by Sidnea D’Amico

Even if the morning sky turns blue,
the sunlight glazing the hog’s back.

Even if the night sky is a scrim
for each star they can see. Even

if a light rain rattles on the old tin roof,
fills the trough and softens them

to sleep, they will wear the same rat-
tattered clothes, her dress hemmed

in mud, his shirt a torn and filthy
robe of slop and swill. Where are

the children? The hog is huge. The
days are days. On every slab of land

the same muck. And they stay, stand,
slogged: she, he, the rain, and the hog.

from Rattle #49, Fall 2015


Jack Ridl: “I write poems to sustain my connection to what matters, to the world I live in, not the one imposed on us minute after minute.” (website)

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