Let me ask you a purely academic question: Hello?
— Dean Blehert

Saturday, June 12, 2010

In a Hurry

Two days ago I drove past a young man
writhing on the sidewalk while three men
lifted his motorcycle out of a puddle
of oil by the curb.

I was going somewhere and decided
I didn't have time to stop.

No doubt he'd felt the same way
until the crumpled rear end of that car
persuaded him otherwise--

though he may still be in a big hurry,
answering petulantly his pain's questions
so that pain must ask them over and over,
haggling, wringing from him each detail--
very time-consuming.

I, too, have found since then
more time than I thought I had
for answering questions--not posed
by any pain of mine,

but by the tiny gap torn
in where I thought I was going to
by my maybe passing right by--
in my hurry to get there--
part of it.

Today another accident: The front of his tiny car
nearly cut off by a left-turning truck,
he's slouched in the front seat, bleeding
from his face (nose? mouth?)
onto his once-white shirt, dazed.

I park and bring over a box of Kleenex
to catch blood and to make amends
for driving past the broken motorcyclist.

I feel okay about it now if you do, Lord,
so you can stop damaging people
and machines for me.

by Dean Blehert

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