Andrea Hollander

Dusk, and the trees barely visible
on either side of the two-lane,
west through the Rockies
in our secondhand Rambler
that growled through the landscape
like some hulking animal.

Our first trip together,
my husband’s attention more on me
than on the darkening road,
our newness a kingdom
of only two.

From the forest edge a deer flashed
toward my side of the car,
almost grazing my window,
then vanished into the woods,
I gasped—amazed we hadn’t hit it.

My husband said he saw no deer,
that it must have been a creature
I imagined. But wasn’t that
its jaw I saw? Its blazing eye?

Our Rambler growled on
and I laughed. Not exactly laughter
but that giddy foreign sound
that seems to come
from somewhere else.

Like the falling part of falling in love:
You leap onto the road unaware
the lumbering beast
speeding towards you
might kill you.

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