Sex in the Small Cities: National Poetry Month, Day 28

I’m all the way in Raleigh at a dealership thinking of trading one car for another. This car I have, I purchased four months ago, traded a 7-year old car for the brand new sportier car I have now. I want to return to the shape size & body of my older model, the car I thought I’d hand off to a reluctant kid in 17 or 18 years. 

I don’t have kids, so as painful as the trade was, back in December, it was a necessity. Now I have buyer’s remorse. I’m all the way in Raleigh to look in the eyes of a new salesman to say “Dude, I have buyer’s remorse. Help a woman out!”

Last night I went on something like a date with a man who is as unfamiliar to me as my new car. Loud and brazen and cheesy and brutish, a true son of Mars, god of war & excess. We were meeting up to toast the return of his old job. The bar was brand new to me and old hat for him. He sang cheesy love songs while patting his heart and then fluttering his jacket, pointing at me when he & the singer crooned “you” or “girl” or “lady”. A 42-year old man who missed his boy band calling. I wasn’t drunk or even on my way. I had a lot of time to think between the karaoke-for-one & the proclamations (“you’re so beautiful! You’re making me nervous”).

New ration ships. New cars. All anxiety-induced. A bad date like a bad purchase can leave us asking “Did I get dressed up this?”

Here’s E. E. Cummings on cars dates & the deliciousness of anxiety. 


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