Arriving in Los Angeles

November 11, 2010

Guy says ‘taxi?’
and leads me
to the saddest Hyundai in town;
Maroon paint job dulled by years –
one more small town beauty
who didn’t make it in the big leagues,

Nice car’s in the shop, he tells me,
rear ended by some asshole and so
he must
do the streets
In this piece of garage
garbage.

He drives for
three girls, for the baby mama
training to be a beautician;
for the kindness inside,
and he feeds the roads with his stare

His phone rings
and rings and rings and he looks but
does not pick up. (cops are out to get you, you know)

‘my girls are so good’ he says
‘after
we baptised them;
They get up each morning and pray together’

He longs for the wife to start working
Maybe take a day off;
seven days a week on the streets
is hard on the guts

He charges me too little
and lets me off
around the corner from the Four Seasons –
You just don’t approach golden palisades
in the saddest Hyundai in town.

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4 Responses to “Arriving in Los Angeles”

  1. Claudia said

    ha – glad you took the saddest Hyundai in town – with a driver of flesh and blood and fears and hopes…making his life a bit transparent as he drove you. i love glimpses like this in other people’s life – feel their heartbeat. i would have made him stop right in front of the four seasons and then get out of that car like the president – yes!

  2. wkkortas said

    The final two lines of the first stanza are a wonderful little metaphor for all the small-town dreamers who didn’t pan out in Hollywood. There is often a fine-line to walk between narrative and poetry in a piece like this; if you’re not careful, the story can overwhelm the poetic elements. This maintains that delicate balance nicely; it’s a very strong piece of writing.

  3. libithina said

    Yes very powerful ~ I have just had the pleasure of reading your work Anton in the spotlight on todays OneStopPoetry ~ and thought I would read some more. How acutely observed you picked up the nuances of the threads of this man’s life ~ the pride he held in his family, his girls, and how they ‘prayed’ every morning, how he worked hard for them seven days ~ ‘he feeds the roads with his stare’, ‘the cops are out to get you’ the powerful intensity,almost bitterness felt ~ at ~ no breaks ~ I keenly followed the journey and visualised the scene .. perhaps in nightly shade rain splashed ~ one life ~ you chose to spotlight ~ and my how you did ~ he was amplified ~ wonderfully
    read and commented by Libby

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