Nagoya Writes

December 4, 2007

Contact by Linda Donan

Filed under: Donan,Issue: May 2006,Poetry — usbengoshi @ 6:16 pm

The sun caressed
the edge of the horizon,
a blazing orange red contact.
just as the traffic signal turned green,
the sun’s glare pricked my eyes,
a blinding connection.

My foot left contact with the brake,
my eyelids blinked together, comforting closure.
Just as I touched the starter, the front of my car
gently connected with the back bumper of the car in front,
soft thump

My heart thumped,
a blasting junction of guilt and fear
As we both pulled our cars to the edge of the road.
I sheepishly said, “Car, OK?”
as the young Japanese man touched my window,
my eyes trying not to meet his.

His eyes widened and lost convergence.
English and Gaijin shock crashing together.
Much Japanese chattering with his friends
as they all studied his rear bumper,
Time passed as I pried my fingers off the wheel
Breathe deeply, breathe slowly, breathe.

Then at my window again, he leans in.
Says, “Car OK.” and reaches a finger towards me
Shakes it, without touching me, and adds,
“Be a safety driver.”
English teacher, I want to correct his grammar,
But I put my foot to the gas and squash the impulse

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