Dark Passage


I drove in the rain and the dark to attend the meeting of a writer’s group. I’d left with plenty of time to spare knowing that traffic might be slow and the roads treacherous. The journey was one of strange, dreamlike interludes. In one of these interludes, I am driving along a blood colored highway lit by the infernal light of taillights behind a black pickup truck carrying the skeleton of a geodesic dome upturned in its bed. I could only imagine this as if it were some kind of claw or antenna. I imagined it being struck by lightning and forking the discharge into half a dozen fingers of brilliant light. I imagined this truck blazing down the darkened highway lit with St Elmo’s fire from every terminal end. I imagined the dome tumbling out of the bed of the truck into the lane like a giant tumbleweed of doom. 

I made a point of moving over two lanes in order to pass. 

Later, in the pass through the hills, I found my eye drawn to the curbing path of a road inscribed on the darkness beside the highway. In the midst of the rain, it was impossible to see the hills: all I could see was the silver ribbon of pavement and the ghostly auras of streetlights suspending it in the darkness, leading towards some unseeable end high in the air.

The darkest part of my day, however, might’ve been my mood- a stewing, angry frustration with no outlet except through the percussive therapy of hitting inanimate objects with various cleaning implements. Failing that, there was always hitting the implements themselves. The surfaces of the house may have gotten cleaner, but the spirit of the house got a whole lot more blue in the process. Going out into the dark and rainy night actually seemed to be a tonic to clear my mind and my mood. Somehow this dark passage seemed to lighten my outlook on life, the way that all good stories should.

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on January 23, 2017.

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