Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Until summer comes back to me.

I hate the cold.

I need sun and summer and warmth

like I need oxygen pulsing through my bloodstream.

I want to take a road trip.

To climb up into the cab of some country boy’s truck

and have him drive me far away from here.

I want to wear big, dark sunglasses

and hang my feet out the window

while he sings along with Tom Petty

well it started out down a dirty road

and backs out of the drive way.

To stop at the first gas station we see,

fill up the tank and buy

a pack of Marlboro Menthols and a case of Busch Light,

a bag of gummy worms and a cold Diet Coke.

I want to crank the music up real loud

and settle down into the seat,

using one of his old t-shirts balled up against his thigh

as a pillow for my head to rest on.

To close my eyes so I can’t see the haystacks and oak trees

flying by, a blur as he speeds us away

along a back road to somewhere else.

I want him to call out choices that all lead us to the coast

wanna turn left or turn right?

as he calls his momma, too,

we won’t be back for supper with the family on Sunday, Ma.

To dig around on the floorboard and find an dirty ball cap,

take pictures of myself wearing it, reflections in the side mirror,

and pictures of him grinning at me through the rear view.

I want to crawl into the driver’s seat when he pulls over for a bathroom break,

and try to drive the truck myself as he laughs and reminds me

remember the last time you tried to drive a stick shift?

To steal a quick kiss, slide back into my seat, and take off again,

driving until we see sand instead of red clay

and waves instead of tobacco fields.

I want to park behind a dune, grab a beer,

tumble out into the salty air,

and stretch on my tiptoes, toward a pink and purple sky.

To grab his hand without saying a thing,

and walk barefoot toward my favorite reminder in the world

of how small I am compared to the big picture.

I want the water to wash over my feet

as it tries to sink me into the sand and pull me out into oblivion.

To take a few steps back and sit in between his legs,

falling back into his arms and neck,

watching the sun fall behind the ocean

like all the couples in the movies do.

I want to ruin the movie moment and make it mine instead, cursing quietly

shit, the camera’s still in the truck

then laugh together as he rubs my arm and we create a memory all our own.

To nod off just like that, napping in the sand,

until the tide creeps over our toes

and wakes us before a beach ranger can.

I want us to head for the boardwalk, stomachs growling,

searching for crab legs and shrimp so fresh they were caught that morning.

To eat dinner on a dock, talking about what rebels we are,

just up and leaving everybody behind like that.

I want to go back to the truck, and pile our blankets up in the bed,

too exhausted to do anything but sleep.

To drift off listening to the sea’s steady roar and his quiet sleep snores,

tucked away behind the dune and under the stars

and everything is perfect.

This is what I want when winter comes along

and summer dreams flood my mind

when I cannot sleep.

A boy and a truck and the ocean

and a road trip to somewhere else,

until summer comes back to me,

and home will be good enough again.

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