Poem Of The Day: August 4, 2014

AUGUST 1970

That Olds was a v-8 and it would run faster than his old man ever imagined.

He didn’t really gas it till we were clear out of the valley, into the mountains on Route 60.

I cannot imagine driving that road now.  The steep grades, the sharp turns, the outside edge of the road only a thin guardrail away from a thousand-foot drop.

 It was completely dark and after midnight and no traffic and no cops to be seen

(why would there be?)

and we made tracks up and down those mountain sides, windows down, radio blaring some station from Chicago.

Gimme a ticket for an aeroplane. We were flying.

 

Neither one of those girls knew where we were

nor would they have understood why we did it.

But they were why we did it.

 

I did have objections, hesitations, even then, about him drinking all that beer.

But, you’ve got to do something,

you can’t just sit in town anymore

and what other way out was there for me?

He could hold it, anyway, so it seemed,

and I was the one with the pistol.

 

We shot road signs all the way into Virginia.

The key is to have the gun completely out of the window before you shoot.

You fire the thing inside the car and you’ll blow your ears out,

not to mention the smell that you can’t get rid of and can’t explain.

If you shoot while the sign is still far ahead, the speed of the car won’t throw you off too much.

 

We were not the only ones to have ever done it.

Those signs along 60 were full of bullet-holes.

 

Still are, I’ll bet.

 

Copyright 2014

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