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When Somebody Calls After 10 P.M.
Bruce Dethlefsen


when somebody calls after ten p.m.
and you live in wisconsin
and you're snug in your bed
then all's I can tell you
somebody better be missing
somebody better had a baby
or somebody better be dead

From Breather (Fireweed Press 2009)
Used with the author's permission.


Bruce Dethlefsen is the author of five books and was Wisconsin’s Poet Laureate from 2011-2012. He plays drums and harmonica in the Prairie Sands Band and runs Poet Camp twice a year. Bruce volunteers writing poetry in prisons and lives in Westfield, Wisconsin. Learn more about him at

Post New Comment:
This is one of my favorite of Bruce's poems
Posted 09/28/2014 11:43 PM
Janet Leahy:
So often the messages that come in the dark hours are the messages we dread. The poem says it so well. Love the picture! Thanks Bruce
Posted 09/27/2014 07:11 PM
I can still see my mother trembling when this happened. Very early morning calls brought the same fear. Your poem is fun, helps to sooth those memories. Thanks, Bruce. Marilyn Windau
Posted 09/27/2014 07:24 AM
I love the humor of this.
Posted 09/27/2014 07:05 AM
Gary Busha:
Yes! Sharp. Right on.
Posted 09/27/2014 06:54 AM
Clever poem.
Posted 09/26/2014 11:30 PM

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