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Justin Barisich

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30/30 Poetry Challenge (2015) Creative Writing Poetry Uncategorized

Day 29 – Life is an Interstate

By on April 30, 2015
(Photo Credit: Flickr / Chad Johnson)

(Photo Credit: Flickr / Chad Johnson)

When we’re born, we all start driving.
We don’t realize it for many years,
but we’re always moving, always navigating
something to get somewhere.

We’re forever trying to get our bearings
in our different makes and models,
always learning how to maneuver
these mobile, grumbling engines –
the hearts of our burdened beasts.

At some point, we all discover the interstate,
and some learn to love the fast lane
while others take it slow in the far right.
As we cruise on by, we begin to take note of the exits,
which one offers the best stops along the way.

Some folks get off too early,
nervous that they’ll miss their old streets too much.
Others take unexpected detours and never make it back out onto the road.
Others have engine troubles and are happy to have any port in the storm.
Others blow out a tire and never recover from the shock.
Others get in small accidents that eat at them for the rest of their spinning days.

Others get run over by cars far bigger than theirs,
and they become the tragic tales of the road,
the cautionary stories that overprotective mothers
whisper into their infants’ ears as they sleep.

Others stay on too long, searching endlessly
for that next track that’ll provide the same thrill
until they’ve burned up every ounce of fuel.

Only a few actually make it to their destinations,
wherever they may be. And they’re why
we stay on the road, why we keep hunting
for where we belong, where we’ll find other cars
that rev up for the same reasons as ours.

But the secret of the interstate
is that we can’t stop seeking it,
can’t stop driving until its right for us, and us alone,
because the road will always rise up to meet us,
and, baby, our engines were born to run.

Remember, forever:
the experience of the distanced journey
is always more beautiful
than touring the same streets
until your tires turn treadless.


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