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Going Broke

Going Broke

Going Broke

by Kathlene Postma



Winter sat like a wolf
on the horizon. My old man

could not fix the car.
I ran along the ridge my

face to the tree lined sky
my two dogs diving

down into the cold
fields. I was a girl of ten

still whole and lighter than
the snow, the fence lines

and the farms built with
dreams that later I learned

mostly died. Our Chevy
would not start.

Dad lay in the mud and
pounded in the part. The metal

whined. In the house, the fire
went out. The wood was

gone. My mother said,
“Take those dogs away.

Don’t bring them back.”
But they were mine.

No matter how far
I went they followed

me home. I didn’t see
the rifle in my father’s hand

but I heard the two shots.
After that I hated the pop

of hail, a lid dropped on a pot,
a door banged shut, him.

Kathlene “Kat” Postma has published fiction, poetry, nonfiction and visual art in many magazines, including Los Angeles Review, Hawaii Review, Zyzzyva, Natural Bridge, Blood Orange, Rougarou, Green Mountains Review, Iron Horse Review, and other journals. Her creative nonfiction piece “Becoming Foreign” was cited in Best American Travel Writing. Kathlene teaches creative writing and fairy tale and folklore literature at Pacific University. She founded Silk Road Literary Review and is Series Editor for New Ground Books, a new imprint at Pacific University Press.