We drove fast as rain over our blue highway.
The highway undressed far horizon button-by-button.
My father’s mercy furrowed the road ahead with possibility.
My mother’s wound baked in the front seat,
just a memory it was, but painful as parched earth.
The wound ploughed her skin with infection.
I sat in the back holding Frank’s fishbowl
and thought about a silver lake, a cooling swim,
hot dogs, mildewed canvas tents. Frank’s guppies sloshed
to the sound of the wheels praying.
A potato chip had wrecked itself on our motel’s kitchen floor,
the final detail of a thousand wrecks from the night before.
Some of my poems come straight from a combination of memory, dream, and feeling–they read like autobiography, they feel like it, too, but except for driving on Route 66 as a little girl, I don’t believe the details are facts. I know I never drove with Frank’s guppies…and in fact, the only Frank I knew was my uncle who at that time lived in Alaska. I do love the smell of a mildly mildewed canvas tent, and that smell brings rushes of sweet camping memories.