WRONG WAY

by Aurora M. Lewis

Riding in a red MG, top down
My eyes wet from blowing wind
Flying down the street going
To get something to drink, eat
Or buy a nickel bag of weed
He was high on acid, mescaline
Something to erase the smell
Of napalm and body counts
In a jungle, where everyone
Who wasn’t USA
Was named Charlie and could
Not be trusted ON the OFF ramp
Of the 110 Freeway, there it was
The sign, bright red and glaring
STOP WRONG WAY
My mind trapped in panic
A needle hitting the scratched
Groove on John Coltrane’s
A Love Supreme
A parrot’s two word eulogy
Echoing in the night
Displaced by June-bugs
Morse coding doom
Wrong Way! Wrong Way!
Slow motioned butterflies
Expelling from my lips
Circling the air until one
Landed and settled on his head
Causing him to look at me
Then U-turn, kiss my cheek
And laugh, making me happy
To be with him.

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Aurora M. Lewis recently completed UCLA’s Creative Writing Certificate Program. She returned to writing from a 35-year hiatus after surviving an erupted brain aneurysm in 2005. Her poetry and fiction can be found in Dreamers’ Reality, the Battered Suitcase, Up the Staircase and Wordgathering.