God and Windshield / Arthur Solway

At her age, she says, life is like a train. Sometimes the ride is
Sometimes there are stops we wish we didn’t have to make.
Spoken like one sitting casually beneath Buddha’s tree
down by the banks of the Ohio. What do I know? I was a child
and she looking as if she just stepped from a painting by Alex Katz—
Hermès scarf, sunglasses, shades of Jackie O.
Into the convertible we’d go, taking the camel humped hills
sending one’s stomach to one’s throat. She’d make the accelerated
punch the gas, swerve the contours of careless laughter.
The car radio blaring against God and windshield
the jazz she so adores—Miles, Coltrane, Parker—from a barge
docked off the Kentucky side. “Radio Free Newport, Home of the Jazz Ark.”
Leo Underhill, the announcer, she’d insist was drunk by 10 a.m.,
while Eddie—you are the soul who snaps my control—Jefferson
crooning, There I go, there I go, there I go again

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