The World According To Ben Part 4 ..Our Poet Superb-A-Mundo Romances About Chrome-A-Fied Road Barges
“Scenic Overlook” (Free Verse)
The day will come When I’ll simply want to drive To a scenic overlook somewhere. Any scenic overlook. Doesn’t much matter. I’ll want mountains, trees, Long sweeping vistas. And so we’ll set off. Spouse, dogs and myself. And the car will be… American, dammit. Long. Low. Sleek. Large. Sculpted. Attitudinal. It will look the way Big band jazz sounds.
It will have a real, Honest-to-goodness name, Not a marketing guy’s symbolic Assemblage of letters and numbers That is supposed to be Some sort of code for “This is a really expensive car.” No, I repeat, my car will have a name. It will have a V-8 the size of Rhode Island. It will rumble the way A male lion does After having just masticated A wildebeest or two. We will roll in comfort. Quiet. Refinement. Smoothness. This rolling vault Will be not quite as old as me, But close.
It will have bumpers Designed for style, not safety. Inside, it will have dangerous Switches, levers and knobs. Things that stick out at sharp angles. It will presume, As cars did when I was a kid, That I know how to drive… That I will choose to avoid Hitting other cars, other objects… That I will understand that Any driver errors I commit Will properly expose me to The possibility of a split skull… That I am responsible for Keeping my riding companions safe… And that if I’m smart and Skillful and don’t happen to encounter Another driver who is neither, We’ll be fine.
We will make it to that scenic overlook. We will get out. We will look over. We will see things scenic. We will take phone photos. We will pick up somebody else’s litter And put it in a proper receptacle Because, well, that’s what we do. And after a while, We’ll get back into our holy rolling American Beastmobile, Key the starter, Push down the button On top of the shift lever, Slide it back into “R,” Ease out of our parking space, Dazzle onlookers with Low, late-day sunshine flashing Off our wire wheel cover Spokes and spinners, And whoosh away The American way, Trailing wisps of exhaust That doesn’t smell like Swimming pool chemicals. Proper exhaust. American exhaust. The kind of exhaust That made this nation great. The kind of exhaust Eisenhower understood and Saw that it was good When he cued up the Interstate Highway System. And that exhaust, From those rumbling twin pipes, Will follow us into The sunset of this Particular American dream, Resonating smoothly, Subtly, not a beat out of place, Not at all unlike The rhythm section of A song arranged by Nelson Riddle for Frank Sinatra.
Verse-Case Scenario, LLC 2016
Still working on making this particular tale come true, and sooner than later.
The actual scenic overlook in my mind when I wrote this is located on the westbound side of I-78 just east of Phillipsburg, NJ. You oughta check it out sometime. And, maybe, pick up a few Big Mac wrappers and 32-oz. Slurpee cups while you’re there.
People are such pigs.