By Brennan Storr
Heat lightning breaks on the horizon
white scars in a black sky.
She’s gone now and
it’s too late to take it back.
Love makes us do funny things.
On US 95 my headlights carve twin trails
into a darkness that seals itself behind me.
It’s been an hour since Payette,
and I should have reached Council by now.
Trees scrape the side of the Cadillac.
I switch on the cabin light to find my lighter.
At least that’s what I tell myself.
She was twenty-four. Her name was Amanda.
I loved her. She loved me.
She loved someone else more. She got sloppy.
If she had been better at keeping secrets
they’d both still be alive.
The broken yellow meridian keeps slipping past
but there hasn’t been a mileage sign for what feels like hours.
The lightning is gone and the wind keeps blowing
debris across the road
just at the edge of my vision.
The radio plays nothing but static.
There’s only the wind. And her perfume.
I switch on the cabin light again,
certain that this time I’ll see her,
and I do.
Propped doll-like on the back seat,
red slashes in black skin.
She smiles and reaches toward me.
“Come with me, ” she says. “I miss you.”
I miss you too.
The car has stopped. The road is gone and
trees scrape the sides of the Cadillac.
The cabin light goes dark and I realize
why it’s been hours since Payette.
I was never going to reach Council.
“Come with me,” it says.
The smell of her perfume makes me ache.
I know it’s not her but I go anyways.
Love makes us do funny things
Brennan Storr is a Storyteller, producer and co-host of @theghoststoryguys podcast and author of: A Strange Little Place: The Hauntings & Unexplained Events of One Small Town