Travelling relatively slow

Are you man enough to do 55?
I mean tough!       I mean rough!
Kiss off the dangers of a vacation in Iraq
with body armor and Rapid Deployment Teams

The real hero stolidly progresses
at a still-fast and very economical 55
Safe and practical we do not want to be
when we can finally run free       we speed

He tells me, “I have a new George Thorogood tape,
but we can’t play it here, you wouldn’t understand”
His Saab Turbo finally finds an unpoliced freeway
tape goes in at 95 and accelerating

Daily facing an endless onslaught of irate speedy
Depersonalizeds in maniacally irrational haste
commuters frustrated in full-race machines
Everyone else passing       rushing to nowhere
you are a pebble trying to stop a tsunami

Are you woman enough to do 55?
Risking your life to make people think
Making people slow down    slow down         (SLOW DOWN)
Risking abuse and assault for what is
necessary for our survival

This unruly mob of manic glazed desperados
So many addicted to that sense of speed
So what is 55?     Slow?     Compared to what?
It’s the right thing to do     yet     so out-of-step

Fully-loaded double semi-rigs screeching
to within inches of your bumper
Aggressively tailgated by little old ladies
and old pickups loaded high with furniture
Maybe testosterone-laden marginal bubbas
try a little high-speed bumper cars

Well-dressed otherwise respectable mothers’
faces contorted into frustration, hate and anger
Twelve- year-olds give you the finger as they pass
Taking on karma of Biblical proportions at 55

Remember the oil crisis, the end of oil?
All cars get 40% better gas mileage at 55
huge savings compounded by millions of miles
always a concept cops and politicians fear to touch

A nation of junkies hooked on speed
driving driving for no reason to nowhere
investing huge money and resources
isolating ourselves, stranding ourselves
in vast seas of asphalt and concrete
If you don’t like the way I drive, stay off the sidewalk

Trapping ourselves, holding each other hostage
on islands surrounded,    not by hungry sharks
but semi-controlled semi-suicidal hurtling hunks of metal
that we take turns inflicting upon each other
volunteering, always going, at all times    day or night

The front-page article in the Chron
exposes our gutless tender under-bellies
Intrepid reporter freeway driving reporting
Bay Area to the Sierra foothills at 55
Passed by 880 impatient irate drivers
to the amazement of the CHP spokesman
who said it must be a slow traffic day
adding that 55 is probably not illegal
since it is the legal limit for trucks, busses and trailers
all of whom just flew on by

somewhat shaken by the malice vitriol
otherwise gentle folk rude to homicidal
endangering themselves and their families
And we encourage them, we aid and abet them
Only 3 years for vehicular slaughter

leaden humdrum lives lived in traffic jams
creeping along in rush-hour traffic
why do we call this rush-hour?
“slow-hour” or “traffic snail slinking”

desperate to finally burst free
into tv commercial fulfillment acceleration
to activate those 400 horses
to activate those 400 horses
pressed back in the seat by rising g-forces
Ride ‘em all! Giddy up! Right now!
to finally activate those 400 horses

To briefly live the phantasmal freedom
of prime-time commercials everywhere
city-grime congested asphalt transforms into
cars speeding gracefully through Alpine meadows
magically bereft of the poison touch of asphalt

the reality is slow    leaden    deathly slow
slowly dying from sedentary inaction
carbon monoxide contamination intoxication
If you don’t like the way I drive, get off the sidewalk

So who were the 880 people who passed
our intrepid Chron reporter that day?
Aged seniors in souped up wheelchairs
with no other way to the Senior Center
Tutti-frutti Hagen-Daas ice cream trucks
speeding to their next neighborhood
only to creep along at a fast walk

Making their day for Yugo and Fiat drivers
pedal to the metal, finally someone to pass
Rusted-out smoke-belching Chevrolet Impala
weaving dangerously, unsafe at any speed
but still “keeping up” and so acceptable
envelops you in its miasma of oily smoke
lurches ahead to pass, endangering both of you
to gain another 100 feet, a second’s less journey

Driving slow alone is the worst, insufferable
This land of rugged individualists will not bear it
Two is easier to share the blame calumny
So let’s start a slow movement of slowness

Then it is not the fault of the one in back
and the leader is insulated from most of the abuse
So let’s start a slow movement of slowness
a 3 mph difference is a start
An initial attack rebuff on insanity

It’s simple, find the slowest car and follow it
resist your ensuing frequent panic attacks
as you find the enemy is also you
back off from your savior’s fender

when you suddenly swerve out to pass -
Swerve back and back off even more
We slowly got ourselves into this mess
and we can slowly get ourselves back out


Poetry Main Page




William Bruneau, Publisher
18001 Shafer Ranch Road, Willits, CA 95490-9626 USA
Website: www.bbruneau.com
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© Copyright 2007, William Bruneau