Raw, fresh, rhythmic and often funny as hell- Bud Smith.
Ordinary life has music, especially. She used to carry a thousand cassettes in her purse. Now she has no purse; lost it somewhere with me. In certain strained dreams, she has a crown she wears of all the fold out liner notes for the greatest albums ever saved from truck stops flanking mundane roads.
“Let’s drive around, anywhere but the malls.”
Delight in the Light, otherwise be crushed flat, otherwise be sexless and only thirteen dollars in your pocket and it matters.
“I’m too broke, but not to dance,” she says, “or siphon gas.”
But with our random radio on, and our wreck of a shaking car and any destination up the road, we’ll eat breathe drink fuck live ordinary and never flinch from it.
“Bet we dream like nobody else does.”
“If they do, I’ll kill them,” I say, “or at least sue for copyright infringement.”
Her toenails are painted bone white with green flecks like St. Paddy’s. I had half my head shaved like I lost a bet. We left a window open three nights ago and two hundred house flies came in. No matter.
“A fly lives two days, takes three days to come back to life, I’ve heard.”
“Pyramid scheme,” she says.
Instead of solving problems we drove an hour to walk in a muddy field and browse pumpkins that we picked up, and tossed back and forth like living footballs. Didn’t buy any; don’t have a front step to put jack-o-lanterns on. Only a fire escape they’d fall off at midnight.
“Never seen someone in jean bib overalls scream like that.”
At the farm stand store, I got a cinnamon donut and a cup of coffee and we split it, driving back, north and kind of east.
“We going the wrong way?”
“The other way is one million miles of nothing.”
“? Take me to the river ?” she sings.
At the last gas station ever, I filled the tank with the remainder balance from a series of daisy-chained gift cards. Hovering above a wall of wheat, there was a billboard missing a question mark that asked, “Found Jesus” or maybe it was saying they found Jesus, he was just walking around in the wheat—they’d finally found him, all quiet and song-less, no cassette tapes either. Him, all extraordinary, and with a bounty on his head.
“You can stop looking now,” told my love. Truth is, everything has slipped between the center console and the passenger seat. We only look to make music.
Bud Smith works heavy construction in New Jersey. He’s a graduate of Central Regional High School. www.budsmithwrites.com