Road to Nowhere

Today I am really inspired. Wind in my face as I speed down the road, and my life before me and behind me like an endless highway, whispering, "I will always be alone, always be alone...."

I dreamed of a bridge that went far out over the sea. As I crossed the bridge I looked down at posts rising from the water covered with moss. I thought the bridge was wonderful, standing tall and leading on, though waves beat at its feet. But then, the sea was only playing. Someday a huge wave would come and wash the bridge away. And the sea itself would be destroyed sometime, in a way that I couldn't think of. Everything would change. Everything would be gone.

But it was all right. I didn't need anyone, I would flow through the changing world. As I rode a piece of the bridge over sloping green waves, a wall of water reflected my image, and I saw that I was a wonderful person. Great satisfaction filled me.

That is how I feel today, and that is why I love the highway. Only this rushing past of fields and forests, and crawling past of mountains and clouds and sunbeams makes me feel awake. I draw in the smell of damp barley fields stretching wide in Idaho; it is the smell of wild, long rides, abduction and rape—the only sort of desire can imagine. I absorb fireflies blinking in cool honeysuckle glades in Kentucky, the scents sharper in the night air, and remember the fox's flight—I was the fox, and the other kids the hunters— and the terror of comets' tails that might portend the world's demise.

Only the changing beauty of the highway feeds my hungering spirit. Now it's Westward again, fleeing the debacle of New York. I'd fallen into the arms of an older, married man, so desperate was I for love (any love), but in our last phone coversation he'd told me he didn't want me; he was going back to his wife. How I wish I could be like a sailor who gleefully keeps a lover in every city. But I don't have that sailor's insouciance.

Pat is beside me. She sleeps or makes note of expenditures, while my tears flow on and on. After a while she asks if I'm tired. I gulp back my sobs and sigh. "No." Then I change my mind. "Well, okay, I'll let you drive."

The closest I've ever come to love was the bond I had with my cat Carmen, who died when I was visiting my father in Hawaii. Why did I take him from his wild home and make him depend on me, only to leave him?

TO BE CONTINUED


Bonnieland