24 | Waiting in the Car

Waiting in the Car

while the men solve problems
inspecting damp courses
boot tips tapping concrete
and boldly undeterred
at staining moleskins with mud
              grass or machismo

they crouch, lie prostrate
to peer into subfloor cavities
              blocked drains, while
marking invisible distances
with flattened palms
or measured strides.

Shadowed in the humming
dusk of a low-lit street
I sink into passenger seat
              form chrysalis, spun
with memory’s mitigating
silk, sheer shut-eyed fictions

all woven to entomb
effort, solutions or necessary
banal. My phone, and options
are flat in this steel chassis
world of coffee-stained
foam seats, stench 

of cigarettes, crumpled
cheeseburger wrappers at
my feet, and metallic waft
of waiting               waiting
waiting. Then, when the
door’s flung open

flooding car with light
and words like conduits
and causeways, I blink
              like a startled deer
stiff-necked, trying to recall
what that blinding light
of man means.

Kate Maxwell is yet another teacher with writing aspirations. She’s been published and awarded in Australian and international literary magazines such as Cordite, Hecate, fourW, Meniscus, Blood and Bourbon, and Brilliant Flash Fiction. Kate’s interests include film, wine, and sleeping. Her first poetry anthology is published with Interactive Publications, Brisbane, 2021. She can be found at kateswritingplace.com.