03 April 2011

The Last Drive Thru

Caribou Coffee Drive-Through
Image by Stephen Cummings
Betty doesn’t know
She won’t give me three dollars in change again.
“Yep.  No cream. No room. No straw.”
She already knows that.

We make our exchange.
I drive off

Her hand pokes out
Three crumpled bills.
I’ve never done that before.
I hope,
As I push down the accelerator,
That she may think about my change
Maybe she’ll even think to keep it
For me.

Maybe JoAnn will reply
“Oh, that’s weird,”
With just a hint of artificial interest
When Betty tells her,
“Mike left his change.”
When she wonders
The next day
Where I am,
Why I haven’t arrived,

It’s not quite a legacy
But it’s a memory
I invite.

But after my family
Watches the box go down,
And cries at Christmas
And laughs in June,
Who else will give a damn?

Maybe Betty.
Maybe not.

OK. First I'll notate a bit of failure. Two days into National Poetry Writing Month, I've already missed a day! The only remedy that I can see is to write two poems today. Here is one from YESTERDAY's  NaPoWriMo.net prompt. I decided to try their prompt. I never ever ever had an inkling to write about my own death. But, as it turns out, it was pretty fun.


  1. Certainly Betty will notice your absence, though she may never comment on it. :-) Interesting take on the prompt. Who will pay attention aside from the family marking occasions? The world continues.

  2. I friend of mine had a cat that died. And she told me about how she felt when she went to the store and the clerk didn't know that the world was different now. That's the idea that was in my mind.

  3. I really liked your take on writing about your own demise thru the eyes of fast food workers. I never would have thought of that! Makes you wonder who would miss you when you're gone or even notice. Great idea! Kudos for at least attempting a poem a day. I'm not even going there!

  4. Strange, but compulsive reading. Bravo.

  5. Thank you Vivinfrance-those words seem very complimentary to me.

    Marinela and SweetTalking-Thanks! I'm glad you liked it.