We drove for nine hours,
Humidity cloaking our windows
Like the horizontal designs of a wedding veil
As our exhaust mingled
In the whispering kiss of dandelion.
I do not remember what conversation
Carried our car south like
white matter in the center of the universe,
Only that I sat amidst it,
Legs crossed like a good girl,
Floating away from the stifling everyday
Of Nashville parks, of soups and subs,
Into the star-shine of an Alabama sky,
Our car whisking us past Birmingham
Rich in it’s night clubs and 3am DJ’s,
Two skyline voyeors in an orange time machine.
The long drifts of twisted trees,
Mangled by last Springs’ tornadoes,
Spun in their roots as if by
A giant, God of thor, the one eye Cyclops,
Then the spinning gin of dust devils
That lolled me off into the drunken dreams
Of sugared sand and jelly fish.
Four hundred miles dissected between
Hurried exits, stop lights and roadway signs
And the nowhere open-all-night
Convenient stores where
Middle-aged women with bad teeth
Spoke to you in ‘darlin’ and ‘baby’
as their too-fat fingers dipped
Into freezers full of stale bread and old eggs,
Up to the sweat of their wrists
Into the desperate wallets of old men
Stiff in their worn pants,
Truckers and troubadours alike,
The after-party of middle age.
All the while I snuck past
The private dinner parties of their blind dates
And into bathrooms smelling of piss
And four-day-old tampons,
Holding my breath while pissing
And then looking into grime-streaked mirrors,
Thick in the car-leather smell of my own skin,
Eyes shot of too much caffeine,
Mind bent upon runes and the words of Keats,
Skinny in my beads and jeans,
The star-chasing, tarot reading Goddess
Of some ignorant man-boys dreams.
Written from a prompt at Poetry Jam.