Sylvi Stein

Behind the Wheel

I drive Mike’s white pickup
off a bridge, whorling
into dark eddies, and snapping
sparks light the thick night air
with our funeral pyre fireworks. Yesterday,
I greet death with a slap on the back
and a key in the ignition,
spinning doughnuts in the suburban dusk,
chasing that indefinable
road trip dream. Yesterday,
I introduce gasoline to flame,
flame to oxygen, heavy car engine
wrapping around the oak tree like an old lover’s
embrace, and we all learn the layers of our
bodies by heart and by sight,
but that is yesterday,
and today, I learn to parallel park.

Sylvi Stein (she/her) is an undergraduate at Columbia University. Her writing has been published by Surgam, Eunoia Review, and Ayaskala Magazine. In her spare time, Sylvi can be found wandering the aisles of used book stores, even though she has more than enough to read at home.

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