James Lee Jobe

What Happened On Texas Highway 34 In 1969 - Poem by James Lee Jobe

The man was dying, thrown from his truck like a projectile, an accident
in the driving spring rain, a dark country highway. My father,48, lifted
the man's broken upper body, and held him, asking, 'Who are you? '

'Ron Seibert, ' he gasped, choking, coughing up too much blood
on my father's shirt. Dad looked up at me, ashen, his eyes full,
where Ron couldn't see the horror on his face,

and shook his head at me; no. I was a boy of 12,
and I knew this battered man we'd found would die.
I only then noticed the lake of fresh blood

he had been laying in. Ron, coughing, wheezing, tried to tell us
he had been moving across country, his wife and child
were following in their car, they'd been separated

in the hard storm. He was 26. He wanted to tell us more,
about how he loved his family, but Dad hushed him, saying,
'I know. They know, too. Just let go, son, ' he told

this young stranger he was holding, 'It's just a doorway,
don't be afraid. Let go. This is your time.' Ron breathed out
one long last breath, relaxed, and was gone. He'd walked

through death's door just as the headlights from his wife's car
topped the rise. My father, the war veteran who I'd thought
was so hard, cried as he sat there in the mud and the rain.

Later, driving home wet, he asked me, 'Did I do wrong? '

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Comments about What Happened On Texas Highway 34 In 1969 by James Lee Jobe

  • (4/30/2006 1:20:00 PM)

    Wow! This is one of those poems that reaches out and clutches your heart! Very emotional..very raw...well done! (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Sunday, April 30, 2006

Poem Edited: Tuesday, July 20, 2010

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