Sunday, March 15, 2009

nightscape of a highway lonesome

For some reason,
the rich sound of Teena Marie's crooning
about her casanova brown
takes me back to that drive
that never seemed to take long enough.

Many a Sunday night,
I sighed as I veered away from I-4
toward the Turnpike, headed toward Ocala,
never toward Miami.
The sun was never setting,
but always set, done, gone.

Some nights, I had the moon as my company,
as I cruised, my black car blending in with the blackness
of the sky and asphalt.
Some drives were accompanied by my tears,
for a man who was always getting better
but whom I later realized, would never get there,
at least not for me.

Sometimes, it would be just me and my frustration,
knowing I had to go back to a place
that some days I couldn't even stand the thought of,
though I now have to stretch my memory
to try and recall why I hated it so truly.

A couple of nights, I smiled on my way back,
though those smiles never lasted.

Because, as soon as exit 382 made itself apparent,
always faster than I anticipated,
the smiles were gone
and the tears wiped away.
My body tensed,
and thoughts ran rampantly businesslike--
French test tomorrow morning;
final project meeting at Library West;
working the front desk tomorrow evening.

Gainesville always greeted me with open arms,
though I could muster nothing but stress in return,
until this night,
when a song unrelated brought back
those drives with the care of hindsight,
for that routine was wholly and solely mine,
and I'd be lying if I said
that the idea of that lonesome highway
and that hour and half
of just me,
the moon/sky/stars,
the asphalt flying by at eighty miles an hour,
and my music

didn't make me wanna kinda just slide into my front seat
robe, slippers, and head rag only,
and just ride out
to the memories.

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