You come through in a battered car that doesn’t make the journey in one go. There are days, and nights too, when the engine fails and it has to be pulled over to the side of the road with a frustrated and irresponsible hand-over-hand guiding the wheel there. The passing cars go by while we pull the scraps together just to buy us enough of a grade to make it a couple of more miles down the road, maybe to the next town should there be luck in the air we’ve done nothing to deserve. This litany at roadsides, under scorching heat giving blurry heat vapor edges to the drawn-up world around us or the nights without a heater but plenty of lights yielding sick-inducing headaches, gets the seven of us nowhere and exactly where we planned to be.
It never breaks down because it was never really together, and somewhere out there a zombie still has hands as active as any ever were on the wheel. The wheels were rolling slow and cruising last I saw them: as directionless as a glacier and with far more parallels. I could have kept my shoes intact had I kept my hand off the door-handle and my ass along for the ride, but even though holes would open like starving mouths while my sockless feet salivated as if either them had any kind of semblance of a last meal to punctuate the sentence we started on the blankest page I’d ever seen, I’d rather walk. Walk on the yellowest, most water-damaged, aged, and long-lost page any mis-combined set of uninspired words had ever formed on. I didn’t have a map, and after having only ventured with maples road-trippers I didn’t even realize what they were. It would be a long time before blue-grey-green with a flicker of yellow eyes even navigated me to the hand-holding of a GPS, but I got there.
I walked, and when I could I got my hands and feet on a bicycle to cover the ground to the distant shoreline. The larger the distance grew behind me the smaller the hands holding and shaping my life seemed to become, and while the distance created that illusion I could see for the first time that the illusion was always alluding to itself with every little contradiction in the back of my mind. Every time a voice I didn’t know told me something felt wrong, or that every repeating block and intersection felt like inching towards atrophy instead of a milestone or trophy, the façade weakened and the curtains blocking the window to the world thinned a little more. The trash bags blocking the rear-seat windows were only a view in hindsight and that was the only way I was looking back. Even if I had to walk a flat tire or take the bus I wasn’t quitting, because while they say to never look back with a positive tone I don’t think anything makes you feel more at home then seeing have far the roadside you left behind opines against you even now.
Graphicacy came, and it came because the voice in the back of my head was my own. It was unrecognizable after a lifetime of not speaking in that tone, and when it started coming out of my mouth I marked a spot and started for it. It moved, then moved again, and moved, moved, and moved again. It’ll keep moving and when I reach the end of the concrete I’ll swim or sail. I don’t think you need to move the globe to find your spot, but when you hate the way it’s been going for you you have to end that something to find something that works.