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Thursday, November 18, 2010

LOST AND FOUND ON THE A.C. EXPRESSWAY


A few weeks earlier he learned to drive stick shift
in a 24 foot box truck on the back country roads.
Now they sent him alone to make deliveries on Sunday.
He felt good riding in that Mercedes Benz party truck.

Ten stops to find first, then deliver, and collect money.
It was easy at first, finding houses in Margate whose
streets are names of the States in alphabetical order.
He thought all towns should be laid out this way.

Driving past Lucy the Elephant and into Atlantic City
to his biggest stop, a shopping mall on the beach.
He knew things were starting to go wrong when a
motorcycle cop walked up to him with a ticket book.

He was parked on a ramp to the Boardwalk in order
to unload tables, chairs, linens, dishes, and silverware.
He tried extreme politeness, “Yes sirs” and apologies
but still got a ticket that he’d pay for with his day’s wages.

Next stop was a fancy racing boat in Trump’s Marina
where he was forced to double park as he loaded a dolly
with tulip champagne glasses and silver wine buckets.
The policeman pulled up on a motorcycle to scold him.

“Son, move quick, I don’t want to write another ticket”.
Back out onto the Atlantic City Expressway, shifting gears,
feeling like a real truck driver from those Seventies movies.
In his mind he sang “Convoy” and “East Bound and Down”.

All this happiness came to a screeching halt as he looked
down at the seat and realized his clipboard was missing
with all the invoices, directions and customer’s checks.
In a panic he pulled off to the side of the road and got out.

His heart pounding, sweat pouring from his forehead,
tears welling up in his eyes, he looked at the truck’s bumper
and there it was, the clipboard with all his important papers.
After doing 55 on 10 miles of rough road, nothing was lost.

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