Page 98

Driving the Back Road Country John Wunsch Jimmy driving a red Ford pickup midnight down a dirt road squashed bugs windshield my nine year old body bouncing up and down front seat 95 mph deer raccoon snakes possum eyes white like fire headlights glaring 1965 Jimmy turning so sharply almost tips us over wheels squealing foot stomping the gas fat tattoo beefy right arm reads GOD PRAYS TOO fly by signs BROWNING PURDIN LINNEUS swampland marshland deathcap hyacinth waterlily cornflower snapdragon wolfbane the rank the profane the bulbous croak of frogs Jimmy’s dog Rebel back seat barking wolf-like ferocious hysterical panic-stricken barks guts hang down pot belt bucket fat careening semi misses just barely its horn blaring eyes widen the deep blackness blackness coming closer yet far away flash by a farmstead flash by a black lake corn-tobacco peanut-whiskey breath breathing heavily crewcut 25 year old Jimmy fisheye black frame glasses missing a front tooth missing a front shirt pocket confederate flag bobbing wildly on the rearview loaded shotgun in the back Jimmy’s fat hand crabbed around the wheel callous-thick with no regrets oncoming rigs hurtling toward us screaming past head-on crash missing us by inches the racket of crickets drowned out by the engine’s roar the poisoning frightening threatening emptiness of pitchfork-tractor trencher-crawler country back-road country bitch-whiskey Bible country country of roadside crosses of insects and sweat and distances country of still-life horses still as a copperplate stamp on desolate farmland of obscene clouds of aerial crop dusting sprayed in a surreal-bright midday sun country of roadside churches salvation-damnation the ten o’clock shot glass pulled back in roadside taverns the air moist thick rich of rank vegetation of death of dreams gone awry an almost palpable texture skeletons in the trees witches in the woods windows shuttered strangers out signs flash by NO EXIT YIELD CAUTION no turning back owl hawk bat cries dog fox wolf 98

Profile for Apeiron Review

Apeiron Review | Summer 2015  

The summer issue of Apeiron Review, a Philadelphia-based literary magazine, is ready for you and a glass of your favorite beverage. Cool off...

Apeiron Review | Summer 2015  

The summer issue of Apeiron Review, a Philadelphia-based literary magazine, is ready for you and a glass of your favorite beverage. Cool off...