Riding in Cars with Boys Maybe Jeff will kiss you or maybe he’ll take you on a date to a Chinese restaurant & talk about vegan food but right now alone in a car with a boy in a boy’s own car at night & sitting there with a person with a penis driving a person who is not your dad a person with a penis who could accidentally or even purposefully brush your skin with his finger or even kiss you & so amazingly whizzing around your ears so you just let him talk. Riding in Cars with Boys You like a boy in a ska band so you & T make a screenname trombonerchick11 & IM him he doesn’t have a girlfriend he drives a Buick with a furry Shriner’s fez hanging he looks like he wants to die so love him deeply. He kisses you all light blue plush in his car & you walk inside the house & lay down on the kitchen floor next to the cabinet with the cleaning supplies & unrubberband your whole body breathes, sparkling your dad asks Reservoir? Isn’t that where kids go to neck? & you spin the bracelets on your wrist again cheeks pinking burst. Riding in Cars with Boys You listen to the Weakerthans every night before bed & you wear a belt made out of a seatbelt to school & boys you don’t even know press it to hear that click & you want to wear glitter on your breastbone, to hang from the huge icicles outside the bathroom window, for everything then everything to crack & surge like the singing in your temples, to stare at the track lighting in the auditorium until you blink & the bulbs make every boy’s hands blot & beam, which is what will eventually happen later, the rushing in your ears, thin neon lines. Riding in Cars with Boys His huge hand on my thigh in his mother’s Volvo & then he backed into a telephone pole. I can’t drive anyway. Crying thick & gasping & choking on the heated seats when he breaks up with me & of course I don’t let him hug me like he wants to. I’m halved while blue-veins snaking up my white wrists I’m in the margins with my black pen, writing the drizzle down the car windows while Miles Davis plays & white it out white it out white it out.
Carrie Murphy is the author of a collection of poems, PRETTY TILT (Keyhole Press, 2012) and a chapbook, MEET THE LAVENDERS (Birds of Lace, 2011). She received her MFA from New Mexico State University. Visit her online at Plums in the Icebox.