In The Yellow Jeep

Beth Mink


The rain on the roof sounds like a kettle,

drummed.  We have been here in it, in a hailstorm,

the wind pushed us right to left across six lanes.

The sun was breaking through the clouds:

Hail and sun and you in the seat

beside me, in your camouflage.  I chose this Jeep

for you if you ever need to hit a tree

head on, but you missed all the trees

and only lost a mirror.  It was the luck of my soldier

before he grew up and left.


Now I understand the plead: return. I keep your room

untouched, unfinished.  The painting

on your table waits.  Like me, you begin

too many projects, and all are unfinished.

Creation chaos has more comfort than endings.

You write there are too many push ups. We wait

for you to finish boot camp.  Return.


The space is empty of your leaps down the stairs.  The puzzle

that filled the dining room now hangs on the wall,

finished.  The tank stand you were rebuilding is gone

from the center of the family room,

finished.  The tank is filled with brackish water.

Three puffers and Chinese algae eaters flutter inside.


When you return we will all fly to meet you

and applaud the end of our waiting.


Beth Mink is an Industrial Electrician from Fishers, Indiana with a fabulously handsome husband, two wildly intelligent sons, three dogs and a yellow jeep.beep.beep.