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What wants to happen?

            —Joi Sharp

 

 

Today it is the tow truck

that leads me back to myself.

For though I call the driver

and though I receive

a text that says he is coming

and though I have paid

my AAA bill on time, the tow

truck does not arrive.

Though I did everything right.

Though the same actions have worked before.

Still the world has not turned out

the way I expected, the way

I want it to. The car

is still stranded. The tow truck

is still not here. Oh failure,

how clearly it shows my attachment

to outcome. How clearly it

shows me the world is in charge.

I look for more doors to knock on,

try to plan more ways to control.

Meanwhile, I am the door.

Meanwhile, this chance

to let go.

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no wonder my feet
never reach the brakes—
all this time
trying to drive
from the passenger side

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But first, she takes a few slugs of absinthe.
The pale green thrill of it blazes in her throat.
God walks in just as she finishes her glass.
God finishes the bottle. Then he says,
Are you nervous? Wild Rose doesn’t hesitate
to say, No way. I am ready for anything.
God says they’re going for a spin.
Wild Rose doesn’t care where. All she wants
is for God to show her a real good time. And
she is open to what that means. Here,
says God, as they arrive at the car,
climb in. He opens the driver’s seat door for her.
She pours her long legs in. There’s no brake, she sees.
No rear view mirror. No reverse. No safety belts.
A big back seat. Oh yeah, she says, and revs the engine.
The night smells like licorice, like sweat.

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In the backseat,
Vivian says, Mom,
I want to know
the darkness,

and so rolls down
her window
and shouts,
Hello Night!

And then she
whispers something
to the air
that I can’t hear

though I strain
against the rush
of road noise
to decipher her words.

The conversation belongs
to her, though, and
to the night, and to
the window that

already she has learned
to open herself.

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