The kind you’re born with, the kind you choose, the kind that teach Catholic school
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We’re all there, gathered
in the yard to see the brand-new Olds
my father bought straight
off the showroom floor. Our smiles
flicker in chrome, stretch
sideways on the bumper to express
our joy. The women too crowd
close, sniff plush leather seats,
run fingers over plastic trays
and handles to exclaim, It’s so beautiful!
while neighbors crush to ogle
tinted glass, sporty visor
beetle-browed across the windshield.
It’s another age, one in which
an acquisition — dryer, TV, Frigidaire —
brings people running, struck
with postwar glut, still hungry
from the long Depression.
We shuffle up to fondle tires, pop
the trunk and wiggle in,
then skid across upholstery
on our buttocks. It seems we’re rich,
my parents happy, still young.
It’s summer. Voices filter
through our trellis; mowers
drone as light rebounds across the hood.
When the others leave,
I slither up behind
the wheel, gaze into its bright
transparent hub, wonder
at the blue metallic background
set with stars, Saturn
with its chrome rings shining.
Right there: I’m sitting right there.
In all these years, I haven’t moved.