Wildly flying down the street, wind in hair, wheels on fire,
I knew then that life wouldn’t be easy
Screeching to a sudden stop, tires smoking, mid- construction zone, doors flung wide open,
we laughed as we struggled to shove the heavy, awkward, orange rubber cones
into the white two-door three-cylinder compact car we’d dubbed “the snail.”
Water rushing over the bras we left dangling on the fountain statue in the park
declaring our mark of freedom and feminism to the world,
Jumping the fence to skinny dip under the full moonlight,
holding our breath underwater,
until we felt our lungs would burst,
we waited for the security guard to pass by on his nightly check.
You were the epitome of coolness,
all that I wanted to emulate –
the girl who lived free,
like life wasn’t full of unexpected surprises and bad news waiting around every bend.
And then you became a statistic.
Teen pregnancy consumed you, swallowed you whole and spit you back out.
Suddenly you were unrecognizable to me.
Once brazen, emboldened by life
now you seemed humble, meek,
an evening shadow of the girl you used to be.
We parted ways,
you to follow your soul towards the mountains
while I drifted into a community of cult misfits
that would forever change my universe.
Much older now, two decades gone by,
I have daughters of my own
and when I pass by that fountain we adorned with our fiery, unbridled youth,
I smile and am thankful for those wild days….