The ’37 La Salle


I guess I should have sat in it more-
Felt the scratchy, worn upholstery beneath my knees.
The sleek, dark shell, the rusted running boards,
The cobwebs stretched beneath the tires,
The headlights.
I loved looking into its visage,
Curious about its years of youth-
Its first journey under the stars.
Cars have a life, a soul, a past.
The La Salle had a good soul.
It was Dad's old-time car:
The car-that-was-in-the-garage-because-it-was-supposed-to-be.
It was a family member.
Watching it tow away was a funeral procession,
And here I am in the wake.
We stood in the garage,
Staring at the old tire marks
Wondering how Dad really felt,
Knowing life would be different now,
As though nothing that happened before had mattered.
Somehow this made the difference.
Together we thought about it, talked about it, loved it.
As one buries the dead and walks away,
Dad cleaned the grease off the garage floor,
We washed it away, brought in a new car,
And walked away, too.

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