Indoctrination

The country road was so narrow, two cars couldn’t pass

Fragrant honeysuckle strong in my nose, irritating pollen in my eyes

Along with sweat, provided by the climb it took to get there

on my bicycle… on this quiet, early Saturday a.m.

My family away, I’m feeling as lonely as the empty fields

That butt-up against the newly-green hillsides

Slow songs come out staggered through heavy breathing

Songs about whiskey and wine and the aftermath

I am passed by an SUV which, once by, slams on its breaks

The passenger-side door flies open – the worry of a rider

In these days of heroin, meth, and the need for a fix

As I slow and prepare to pass to the left

a girl in her late teens, smiling, pops out and runs in front of the vehicle

“Daddy it’s alive. I’m not touching it”

“Just pick it up by the tail and throw it in the weeds”

He says, as I pass his opened window. And I see it

A skinny, four-foot black snake, innocently crossing the road

I laugh from his comment, and he laughs too,

As his daughter bends down and I ride on

I hear her squeal, actually a full-fledged scream

And I again laugh

She saved a friend of the farm and the farmer

I think of my long-departed grandmother, who called one by name

The SUV passes once more

I turn left and begin to climb

On a route that will take me home.

 

© 2018

© 2018

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