I Am The Road

Momma always used to say “Jeremiah Jones you won’t never amount to nothin’ in this world.”

Well see me now momma. See me burnin’ towards the horizon. I ain’t just the King of the road. Hell I ain’t even one with the road. I am the road.

Out here nobody can touch me or hurt me or tell me I ain’t good enough. Here the lights shimmering on the tarmac are my only companions, beckoning me forever onwards. The engine beneath me is my mistress now, her growl a soothing lullaby, the petrol fumes like sweet perfume. We could just spend eternity chasing the next bend and never have to worry about another soul.

Another kart comes flying past on the left – I notice Stevie’s hair poking from the back of the helmet then he is gone from sight, hidden behind the next tyre wall. Moments later another two go-karts come roaring after and then I’m alone on the track once more. Lapped again.

Title image courtesy quinet

Published in: on April 28, 2011 at 8:40 PM  Comments (21)  
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21 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Good one. The last line had me chuckling,

    • Glad you liked it James – I wanted to have one final little spin at the end!

  2. When the journey *is* the destination, what’s the rush in getting there, right? Great little piece.

    • Hey thanks – the idea actually came to me whilst go-karting. Says something about the writer’s mentality.

  3. Rather poignant, how he goes from not just King of the road, I am the road to lapped again. This little piece says so much about the kid – his mother, his self image, his wants and desires. Really struck me.

    • Cheers Jon, glad you liked it! Interestingly I’d pictured the narrator as a grown man but there’s no clues to really indicate this so it’s totally open to interpretation.

  4. There is a sense of the character proving himself in this piece. I see him as a teen to early twenties, finding something that he knows he’s good at. I was in that cart with him, nice writing!

    • Hey Helen – I’m not entirely sure he’s good at what he’s doing but he’s certainly found a sort of inner peace!

  5. Ah yes! How the mighty do fall. Love it.

    • Glad you enjoyed it Deborah, this is partially inspired by truth – I was karting recently and had been under the impression I was doing quite well… not the case.

  6. That was neat. You really had me going there for a second.

    • Ha ha – success! I intentionally wanted to build up a gritty feel and then sweep it away from beneath the reader’s feet.

  7. Nice! The ending was perfect: Lapped again.

    Quite a ride for such few words. Great piece!

    • Glad to hear you enjoyed it Chuck! This is a very short one, I’d considered beefing it up but then decided I’d already covered everything I’d needed to.

  8. Very cool narrative voice. And this strikes me as something that might as easily happen to an adult on a highway somewhere. Re: your reply above, I also get a kick out of thinking it’s a grown man.

    • Cheers! For the first two paragraphs I was aiming to emulate something very Americana and old school, along the lines of Wise Blood or Easy Rider. Yeah I’m still chuckling away at the man-child mindset at play here, it could be either a boy or a fully-grown man here and they’d be acting and thinking exactly the same way!

  9. Oustanding work here David! For me it evokes the voice of not only a young man finding his way, but of Many young men “escaping the prison of youth”, (hope that makes sense). Great job!
    Welcome to #fridayflash!

    • Thank you kindly Deanna! This isn’t actually my first foray into Friday Flash, I’ve just been away for awhile.

      • Well I thought your name sounded familiar. In that case then, welcome back! 🙂

  10. I enjoyed the childlike you’ve used to describe something as important as a person and how he/she feels about family/societal expectation. The diction was very appropriate too.

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