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Ruby, My Dear

Jose Padua

photo by Jose Padua

I could write a poem about Thelonius Monk by saying how he bent

notes, or how Uri Geller bent spoons, how his jagged rhythms took


you by surprise, how it’s hard to believe these phrases, or by trying

to imitate his sound using words, or by driving slowly on the highway


at the beginning of winter but I won’t. Instead, I’m writing about a night

far away from anything New York, Rocky Mount, or North Carolina,


a night filled with plums and avocadoes, some kind of purple or green

light showing through the fog so it’s hard to see where we’re going


or who’s at the wheel. It’s not me anymore, obviously. Bye-bye

to all that ice, and good-bye to the rest of the year and good-riddance


to the goddess of opposite only marriage. I promise, to try to pull

the power from white-power radio by acting like less of a dick.


Don’t look in the mirror Angelina Jolie you’ll be frightened,

don’t eat the heads off of bats Susan Boyle: fly, be free of the


leeches, be wary of bad hats and smelly white feet. Thelonius

Monk was not driving a truck when he composed “Ruby, My Dear.”


I am not driving a beat-up Oldsmobile. I am not re-writing King Lear.


-Jose Padua


Photo by Jose Padua. Jose Padua is co-author of the blog Shenandoah Breakdown.



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