You’re On the Side of the Road and Surely This is Where You Die (Again)

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

A poem depicting an accident I was in as an adult as well as it's correlation, in my mind, with another experience of being in a vehicle with a blown out tire when I was eight years old.

Submitted: August 19, 2018

A A A | A A A

Submitted: August 19, 2018



You don’t know what to do

Or what happened or why

This had to happen to you on


Day or any day, really.



Gazing at your obsidian hood, speckled with splots of dust,

That has now begun to fold itself and peak like a mountain at the front of your vehicle is all you can do.

The airbags went off.

So, your mind crunches the numbers

Even if math has never been your thing.

It’s bad. Totaled. Probably. You’re fucked.

The airbags are dangling in front of you. They feel powdery.



You’re out of the car and you’re walking to the truck you rear ended.

You smell sulfur and hell-fire and there’s fluid leaking all over the pavement.

There’s a distant thought that tries to scream at you, “Is it flammable?”,

But you’re a little preoccupied with watching the man stumble out of his truck

And watching him cough and spit on the pavement

And the hissing that’s ringing in your ears

And the car horns that are still going as if God raised his hands,

Pointed at this section of the orchestra,

And is letting the note drag on for too fucking long.

In the cacophony, you’re grabbing your phone.



Your hands



As you bring it to your head.

Your body begins to assess itself.

Your wrist is purple, swollen.

It looks as if, at any moment, it might burst and spew your inner tendons and blood out

And that your veins will just snap and dangle from the wrist.

But it’s not that bad.

There is minimal pain,

But you are afraid to move it and find out

If anything, or at least any physical part of you that is, really might be broken.



You’re sitting in the rocks now

And the sun is baking you at 106 degrees Fahrenheit.

Your legs are folded together as you sit over them

And the highway keeps moving.

Your age starts to blur.

You can’t tell if you’re 8 or 20 anymore.

You can see the U-Haul with the blown out knee.

You can’t decide what day it is anymore.

You can see your Dodge Challenger’s face warped and mangled.

Your dad is hugging you and saying “It’ll be alright. (x2)”

Tear droplets are plowing through the dust on your face

And you’re looking west, at the setting sun and the uninterrupted traffic,

And you’re looking east, for anyone familiar that will pull to the shoulder of the highway.


© Copyright 2019 D.Thistlewood. All rights reserved.

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