Red Tractor

by Terri Kirby Erickson

Just before you reach the Triple B Country
Sausage sign, there’s an old red tractor
hunkering down beside the road.

You can hear the heavy sighs as it nestles
into the leaves, loosening its belt
and letting its chassis hang low. Blink

and you’ll miss it twitch like a sleeping dog—
the rise and fall of its rust-covered ribs
when it rolls at last, into a dream of wheat.

North Carolina native TERRI KIRBY ERICKSON is the author of three poetry collections, including In the Palms of Angels (Press 53, 2011). Her work has been published or is forthcoming in American Life in Poetry, 2013 Poet’s Market, JAMA, The Christian Science Monitor, and North Carolina Literary Review. Visit her website at