Highway K

Got off I-70 onto Highway K about three in the morning.

Big neon signs that jig and pop in the dark tell you where

gas for 2.09 can be found, and two taquitos for 1.29 if you

buy a large drink. The red glow of a Schnuck’s can be seen further down the road across the street from an old school Papa John’s

sign that struggles to breath. There is a Mickey D’s arch to my left

as expected.

I grab the taquitos and a grape soda for the experience because the road

has taken my hunger. The advertisements for gum and cigarettes are frozen

in perpetual enthusiasm and the attendant seems frozen too behind a starched

car magazine but heat from the taquitos melts the stillness of his caricature.

he yawns as he prints the receipt.

I say, “Goodnight or Good Morning” and he says he can never decide which is

exactly what I’m going through as I start the car wondering whether to go home

or linger under the vast back drop of Missouri waiting perhaps for a change in the days

unless mine should be utterly spent and the stars come to claim me at last.


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