Saturday, May 21, 2011

skittles

driving home i am almost in alpha mode by the time i reach the old glenn exit if it wasn't for the incognito cop atop the bridge, so i was actually paying attention when i see her. wasn't sure at first, but then is that a girl?! and a hairline before the onramp i come to a full stop.

she looks young, but then i've never been good at telling age just by looking at someone. her face is like a young bjork, unspoiled and fresh, clean skin, bright eyes, peachy cheeks under the straightest hair since borat as bruno, but black. she has this icelandic flair and asks what gauge my earrings are and smiles when i tell her they're fake and from amsterdam. that's where i'm going next week, she says, i'm traveling with my boyfriend.

her glass gauges are blue and real. she tells me they healed in two weeks and she is using petroleum jelly on the piercing to help stretch it. pulling up her sweater she shows and tells. petroleum jelly is good for psoriasis. do you know what that is?

why am i thinking screw statutory rape when she tells me her age and how much older her boyfriend is? he has a ninehundred dollar a week job in construction and she just started working at a hip hop store in the mall. almost eighteen is none of my business but i remember the guy who sold me my first vw bug off the old glenn had that record, and his now wife and child waved good bye as i tuckered off with my little red buggette.

are you a poet, i ask, because i get that vibe from her. i am, and i am a musician. i taught myself the violin and the guitar and the saxophone, and i write nature poetry. right now i am writing a book. 

we approach the intersection i said i would take her to, but i change my mind, remembering trader and how often i've meditated safe hitching. are you sure, she asks when i tell her i'll take her to where she needs to go. i'm sure. tiny frail thing like you in the wrong car, don't want to see this on the late night news. i am not saying this aloud. you know, comes her unsolicited newsbyte, they can just come at you with a syringe and rape you and throw you out the car. we are now on kgb road and i know she is not kidding. kgb road is fabricating pulp fiction for real. 

although i tell her my origin, she talks about germans as if i am not one of them. i can't follow her train of thought along the stops of beauty and ethereal noblesse and unblemished skin. i will write a book about my travels. she has been to all the glaciers in alaska that one does not have to fly to, and to the badlands and yellowstone and maryland. amsterdam is going to rock her world, and i tell her about stew's passing strange, but she is really worried about wearing a bikini on european beaches with her blotchy skin, so she tells me in detail about her light box therapy, which will only slightly burn her in one minute and thirtyeight seconds.

i told my boyfriend i am getting a ride with a friend. he doesn't like it when i hitch all the way out here. no doubt, plus, at twentyfour, why doesn't he come to pick her up? but this is a conversation my mind has with itself.

i get lost in a subdivision as the sky turns peach and the clouds into cotton candy. what a misnomer, since it is neither cotton nor candy, just a root puller and dentist's best friend. skittles aren't really much better, but their artificial flavors pop like corn dancing salsa on our tongues.

i'm skittles. thanks for the ride.