I am alone in my woe;
My heart throbs along to the music blasting through my speakers.
Rivulets of hot tears stream down my cheeks, causing mascara and eyeliner to create haphazard paint strokes across my face.
The car in front of me is driving far too slowly.
I crank up the music, feeling lonely
And bang my head to the music, sobbing fully.
My heart is rent, my reputation, sullied.
I turn on my turn signals, the sporadic ticking driving me crazy
And the car ahead speeds up, as though we're racing.
Tears streaming, voice screaming, sunlight annoyingly beaming, I shove my foot onto the accelerator and pass the car.
He tailgates me awhile, before dropping back and leaving me to drive.
Nearby, there is a semi, obscuring my vision. I roll my eyes and pass him, too
- just another obstacle in the way to my destination.
Across the interstate, there are more cars
More people in cars
Just driving their cars,
I know nothing of their hearts, but
We are all just mere scenery to one another, and unless they interfere with my driving, they are of no consequence to me.
At any moment, I could lose control and veer into the other lane, killing the people in the car next to me.
But I don't.
We trust one another, perfect strangers.
We know nothing of each others' lives.
They don't know a thing about me; all they know is I drive an old Grandma-car, a white Buick, and I'm driving 69 miles per hour, four miles over the speed limit.
Ahead of me, there is a train
Oblivious to my tears and my pain.
I slow down.
The car ahead of me does not. He speeds up. In slow motion, I watch him, trying to yell, "Stop! Stop!" but I cannot, and even if I did, he would not hear me.
He rams through the rails, the automatic guards
The random stranger, we're just yards apart
(but he was just another person in a car).
In suicide, he collides with the train, and I cannot reach my eyes in time to cover them. His death is forever sealed in my mind; I will never forget it.
And that is when I realize the thing about people in cars.
We are not just obstacles to one another. We are real, live humans, with real, live lives.
We all have the potential, but only some of us take the crash.