Brown Sedan

Brown Sedan

Low-slung and a little too responsive to the road
the tan-gold-brown (I can’t pin down the color) vehicle
manufactured circa 1978
swayed through downtown and points east
this January, at the age of forty years,
driven by a man
who didn’t care to remove the snow headdress
the car was wearing
and proudly, I might say.
I wondered if the car’s heater still worked
in the idle moment before the light changed
the car pulling out ahead of me in line
starting off well but settling into a kind of drifting waver
marked by an oscillation between our lane and the other one
a nonconformity that had to bother the cars trying to drive there
it sure was getting to me, too. Every possible accident avoided
by what chance I don’t know
we arrived at the next light and the next
the old car easing up to the stop
in a masterful and thoroughly aggravating way. I fought the urge
to nudge it along to the stop
tap its heavy chrome rear end
with my well-engineered
up to modern standards
front bumper. I could see what a lot of latitude
the old car allowed the driver
the man unconcerned about some things
lane delineations and their relationship to
the amount of play in the steering wheel
and giving a lot of thought to others
such as adjusting his hat and
squirming into a more comfortable seat position
before the car started up from each stop.

The light changed. I hissed
in impatience. The car of vague color
and driver
took off hard and fell back in the space of a block
drifting lane to lane
carefree in its snow bonnet
bad shocks
insouciant attitude
living long and prospering.


4 thoughts on “Brown Sedan

  1. I hope car and driver got to wherever they were going without an accident. Coincidentally, I just read an article in the Inquirer about an elderly man with Alzheimer’s who went missing for several hours after taking off in his car. I’m imagining this driver in a similar condition.

    • You know, some people seem to be protected on the road no matter what they do. Or maybe it’s the car with the good karma that no matter how it wanders and swerves at the driver’s behest, well, it somehow has a survival instinct and stays in one piece!

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