My comrades turned to look for me in the rear of the jeep, where void of my body, two sea bags flanked shards of blood tinted glass dusting the seat like confetti at a homecoming dance:
I walk the yellow line and he shouts, “just lay down” not because of the superiority he had over me but he was trying to keep me from flying away
to slumber on the gravel wrapped in exhaust fumes, I was rocked to sleep by humming cars wheezing by my head as the smell of blood escaped my ear,
“shhh, lay still” I hear her voice whisper secrets only I could feel, wrapped in pulp of crystal clear dusk, an alarm bell pulses in me, “stay and see.” Something has me tethered to the stench of
gauze around four inch tubes of plastic jammed into veins; I taste metallic syrup with dirty oil scrubbed into skin by asphalt with a fresh lemon’s sting,
in death they can all stare at me while paramedics tear at camouflage and boot laces, looking for the breath that was not coming, I hide under cover with a thick braid to shield me from shades of Periwinkle;
in death I swim with a stream of crippled tapeworms, backstroke into a lantern pitched high above my parent’s room; look through the window smudged with folds and
fall from the sky into the doors, sing along to the music of the ambulance. Cradle me. A mask too tight and air tasting of sugar cookies Mom makes every holiday -
I choke on granules of breath.
-- Tonya Peterson is a senior at Lewis University in the English Department’s Creative Writing program. She enjoys reading and writing and plans to attend graduate school to continue to expand her writing and literature knowledge. Her poem “Convoy” was first published on Poetry Ark’s online anthology of poems. Tonya also enjoys spending time with her family and attending events and activities her two children are involved with.