Navigational Aids

 Photo Credit: i k o. Licensed CC-BY-NC-SA
Photo Credit: i k o. Licensed CC-BY-NC-SA

With GPS you look for the turn that you’ve just been told
will take you to the onramp and then the exit in six point five miles.
I kind of like her voice, never a hint of doubt, simply clear
directions that have nothing to do with the color of the leaves
lining the side street, or a darkly unfamiliar neighborhood, new
exits that may take me away from town completely,
that guy on the sidewalk who looks like somebody just died.

Part of the joy of driving is discovery, arguments that maybe
on the other side of the hardware store is a shortcut, debating
whether that turn was farther away than you remember;
was it Johns Road or Johnny Place Lane? You know for sure
that if you just keep going you’re bound to get somewhere
and probably you can figure out the route to somewhere else.
What you see is where you are, a pretty reliable orientation.

These last few months have been that old kind of driving, alert
for the familiar and aware of the unexpected, not all that sure
the place we’re heading for is still there, but confidant
that with time, recognized landmarks and common sense
I will figure my way through these winding streets, eventually
pull into some driveway that might even be the right address.

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