Night Interstate


He pulls tired eyes from the sideview mirror
Watching headlights chase dark highway
They skim to the rearview and dashboard

And he, the road’s only passenger
As miles bleed into an unaltered scenery
With tree walls that hedge him on either side

Faint premonition settles in his seat
It stares quietly at the back of his head
Enticing his mind to wander more than he would like

Prompting solitary introspection
Until a gleam of twin stars a half mile behind
Appears and gradually erodes their distance

For the length of a breath both cars drive parallel
Their engines sharing a thrum as though
They were two halves of a much larger machine

But his neighbor slides into the lead
Breaking their momentary bond
Once white headlights, now red

Driving off the pace at three hundred yards
Eased, he shifts behind the new leader
Knowing that he has found someone to follow
And the road cannot end without his knowing:
The one who goes before will be able to tell him that

Night inks out dormantly, absorbing their exchange
His exit magnifies and he takes the overpass
Counter-crossing the expressway from below

Arriving at budding sidewalks and civilization
He brakes to the stoplight to face opposing cars
And as the signal climbs down to its green perch

For a moment, he may not have remembered if asked,
He wonders, not so much where they will go, but instead
When they enter the empty parkway, who will they follow?

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