The Sand and the Fury
I sit in a car, landlocked, desert stretching outward in all directions. The speed dial lies limp, dead set on zero. I press my back into the sun-softened leather, feeling far below high, and soak in the scenery. Fifty yards from my smeared windshield a mess of black feathers huddle around to hide something evil, one hops back to fan its wings for a midday yawn. To my left the highway cuts south to the coast, blinkered one-way traffic zips toward the horizon and a hot wind whips away the traces of their whining engines. The car, my car, sits jacked on 24 house bricks, six under each wheel. I sold the tires; my priorities are never in check. I pull down the sun visor and stare at the picture postcard tacked to its mirror, dog-eared and thumbed with dirt. Quite the picture, a white beach, empty, a blue sea clear of people. I glance towards the highway and catch the sight of an eighteen-wheeler crossing the centerline to pancake a too late rattlesnake. Good eye. A lone star flaps on the trucks arching antennae, the driver sounds off with a victory horn blare and the noise peels the birds from an unrecognizable carcass. I reach for the radio, switching stations and frequencies. A DJ is about to spin a disc from a Colorado combo, says they call themselves The Maraca Five O, says they got a mighty fancy sound going on that never disappeared but never really came back, says these young fellers might be able to change all that. The sound hits me in the gut with the force of a runaway Buick. A blistering display of reckless passion, all balled up and capped with twang, sharp and nasty, the wham of steel, vibrato shivers and double picking, thrashes and flurries: beach surfing, town surfing, naked city surfing, road surfing, tire screech surfing, soul searching surfing, live or die surfing, elemental, primal and proud. Suddenly, the air is fizzing and reeks of sulfur. A giant vortex of swirl, of sand and fury surrounds my car. I grip the steering wheel and my knuckles whiten, instinctively my foot hits the accelerator hard and the car lifts off to cloud level. I am headin’ south at 110 Per. Distinct town’s blur into a mindless sprawl and a distant bluish mass appears. The road far below is peppered with gung ho racers and trucks gunning the white line. The Five-O’s instrumental momentum carries me no further. I touch down on a long stretch of pristine beach bathing in sunlight as the waves fall and wash. I push open the car door and it crumbles apart and powders itself to the sand. Nice.