On Route 27

by George Espinoza

I merged from the leftmost lane 
to the middle lane. Calming my breath 
as I pass miniature houses and shrinking trees 
that wave goodbye in the wind. The inclination lingers though.  
The jittery urge to startle my side mirror by glancing, fidgeting, 
and signaling leftward. Rubberized wheels teeter excitedly
before I lull my blinker.
I rove underneath green destination signs 
as their whitened words blur. Their glossy letters stretch 
and crouch concurrently with the opening and 
closing of my eyes. I squint as purple-tinted skies blue.  
Sets of reddened taillights glare through my exposed windshield, 
so each beam blinds me. I wake my blinker and continually shift rightward
as I mount the exit ramp. 
I park beside a humanitarian maple 
whose welcoming branches gestured for my arrival.  
I notice the fatigued speedometer, with its revolving minute hand, 
indicating a time of slanted slumber. I also observe the discharged gas pedal, 
smeared in dutiful dirt and grime, surfacing for earned ease. 
The headlights, despite their wide-eyed concentration, 
begin to drowse as their gaze dims and dozes. 
My companions are coddled by a collecting calm, and I want to smile.   
I then look in the rear-view mirror, and ask: Where can I find peace?
Underneath the mirror hangs a still Cross pendant—stainless steel in material
and radiant in nature. It glows, glistens, and gleams with a gleam brighter 
than anything earthly. It answers my question, and I smile.

George Espinoza is an undergraduate student who resides on Long Island, New York.

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