Things that go bump in the night,
The nocturnal omissions of driver's ed
Are taught by experience ....
Black ice, and stalks of stark white bodiless legs
Skittering across beams of headlights
In rain-soaked darkness.
Somewhere, above the legs, a big brown beast,
With more coming from an invisible
Ditch, I won't know for sure. Terror,
Heart pounding, hands gripping steering wheel,
knees and ankles straining on brakes,
keeping a ton of metal from hitting
A quarter ton of flesh.
Long after moose escape, unscathed,
And long after I escape, unscathed,
palms are sweaty and knees shake when I am
Safely home. Winter driving in Alaska filled
With nocturnal omissions, not warned of in driver's ed.
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