we loved old road maps of cheerful design
the brochure people motoring
with wide smiles
the mother in red lipstick, an orange shirtwaist dress
her chiffon scarf blowing in a motoring wind
the father sure of the route.steady hands on the wheel.
a twinkle set to go off in either eye
as if it were Christmas on the Fourth of July.
the backseat children leaning forward
as if expecting the world for dessert.
or burgundy cherry ice cream at the next Howard Johnson's.
old roadmaps so waffle cone crisp in their delineations.
so perfect folded up impossible to fold back up again
except as a magic trick.
on any road you could find another service station
another road map, in case this one wasn't working.
if only life had been that way. All Firestone caroled,
the routes marked out in red and blue
and everything to scale.
as it is.
we are glad
there is any road at all.
mary angela douglas 15 march 2017