The Drive
by John Biscello

There wasn’t much time left. Your foot, in an open-toed sandal,
hard against the pedal, we were doing about 45,
and the kid, asleep in his car seat in the back—
drool-bubbles ballooning liquid clouds round his mouth:
yes, he’s definitely out. There was one more stop
we had to make, your friend Greg’s house,
to drop off a bag, then our time together,
18 hours in all, would be done. Like I said,
time was running out, and I looked down at your foot:
pushing, pushing, easing— toenails painted plum violet,
then I looked at you and you looked at me,
in that way it was agreed—
your hands steady on the wheel—steady, steady—
my finger, the brazen middle one, unfurled,
and found itself under your dress,
between your legs,
no flimsy barrier of panties to contend with.
Your reaction, instant: eyes rolling, half-closed, hard sucking-in of breath,
low animal moan—
The road, I said, keep your eyes on the road:
because, yes, my intention was to get you off,
but not at the expense of three lives,
one barely formed.
I removed my finger,
brought it to my nose, sniffed, brought it to my lips, licked—
and you looked at me, how you looked at me,
and I smiled, saying—the road—and when you returned
your gaze, straight-ahead, I inserted my finger,
the middle one, again,
and curled it inward….
no more road
in your eyes, closed,
and out flew a warbled coo,
as if a baby bird was nesting in your throat.
That, I remember, and the clouds too:
puffed and creamy
like rich Parisian pastries
suffused with tangerine blood
that you could almost taste, almost.
When we got to Greg’s place
I made sure to introduce myself
and shake his hand, the satyr-in-me savoring
the fact that secret bits of you had been transmitted,
all over his fingers,
a phermonal glove slipped on,
Two minutes into the drive back
the kid wakes up
screaming: his round pie-face
burning pink and full of tears.
I tried to soothe him, with my other hand,
the clean one,
poking at his nose,
and mystified, he stopped crying, briefly,
then went right back to it.
It is the day after
our drive,
our 18 hours,
what I now classifiy as a haiku-style
love affair: compressed intense something to do with life.
You are back on the West Coast,
driving your own car, not a rental,
and when I see you next
and you take me for a drive
—somewhere, somewhere—
I’ll be thinking car things like: mileage, the make,
is there an AC, how good are your brakes—
and if when, we’re cruising this different road,
you chance to look at me
while I’m looking at you,
I’m certain other things
will be thought of too.
About John Biscello:
John Biscello is a Brooklyn-born poet/playwright/writer who spent the last
seven years in Taos, New Mexico, where he staged several productions of
his plays.  His blogs can be found at
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