Monday, January 27, 2014

Poem for a Monday

Is the Subaru the State Car of Maine?  The Regional Vehicle of New England?  It should be.  Conrad and I love ours:  we currently have a blue Outback, mileage in the six-digits, blessedly paid off.

This poem by Stuart Kestenbaum of Deer Isle, Maine, is particularly appropriate given the frosty temps of late, and our shared admiration for the Subaru.  I found it while perusing Take Heart: A Conversation in Poetry.  This site is the brainchild of our poet laureate, Wes McNair, and if you haven't visited it, go.  Now.  Click.  It's such a gift.

Starting the Subaru at Five Below
by Stuart Kestenbaum

After 6 Maine winters and 100,000 miles,
when I take it to be inspected

I search for gas stations where they
just say beep the horn and don't ask me to

put it on the lift, exposing its soft
rusted underbelly.  Inside is the record

of commuting: apple cores, a bag from
McDonald's, crusted Dunkin' Donuts cups,

a flashlight that doesn't work and one
that does, gas receipts blurred beyond

recognition.  Finger tips numb, nose
hair frozen, I pump the accelerator

and turn the key. The battery cranks,
the engine gives 2 or 3 low groans and

starts. My God it starts.  And unlike
my family in the house, the job I'm

headed towards, the poems in my briefcase,
the dreams I had last night, there is

no question about what makes sense.
White exhaust billowing from the tail pipe,

heater blowing, this car is going to
move me, it's going to take me places.

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