This is farther than I think I meant to take us, but that’s okay because in many ways—ways like this way or that way or maybe some way that no one has thought of yet, because everyone knows this way and that way—this was exactly as far as we were supposed to go when we went, and we went and went because going and having went is the way we say it’s us together and no one else is here and we love each other and I love you and you love me and screw the rest of everyone back at the place we left because it was a bad and terrible place with nothing for us.

 

I’m maybe empty inside, but I’m not quite sure if that’s true or not true because I don’t think I have the ability to look deep within anymore in a way that maybe a few years ago I was able to look inside myself, and I’m pretty sure the reason I can’t seem to look inside anymore is that I’m getting older and bigger and heavier and all the things I’ve been stuffing inside myself are obscuring the emptiness that is an emptiness that is not related to the things I put inside myself—or, maybe it’s better to say not situated near or in the way of the things I put inside myself—but instead related to my mind and the emotions that my mind makes by spilling chemicals this way and that through the brain that is in my head.

 

But let’s keep moving and lets keep seeing where all this moving takes us.

 

Forget what I said at first and let’s go farther.

 

I know we are far, but let’s see if we can go farther, because I am ready if you are, and I will keep driving if you will keep riding in the passenger seat, and I will let you keep fooling with the radio if you will keep fooling with the radio and seeing if you can find some people talking on it, because when we are in the car, singing is good but singing is a thing we can do ourselves and don’t need the radio to do, and when we are in the car, talking is good but I don’t want us to talk because we might start talking about things like why we’re doing this and who will miss us and maybe we should go back, so let’s have you fool around with the radio and see if you can find some other people who will talk so we don’t have to talk, and then maybe you and I can maybe sing something a little bit later if the mood strikes us because singing will probably help me stay awake.

 

Because it’s dark and it’s late, and look out the window because it’s dark and it’s late and don’t you want me to keep driving until I make it all the way to the black horizon where we can fall in and the car, surrounded by the black horizon will disappear?

 

I love you.

 

Let’s drive some more.

 

We’re safe I think.

 

 

MATTHEW SIMMONS lives in Seattle. A PDF of his last story collection, THE IN-BETWEENS, can be downloaded for free from Civil Coping Mechanisms.

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