we called the game Jenny made up driving
back roads through West Virginia

at twice the speed on signs. Foot on
the gas, foot on the brake, she'd take

a 25-mile-an-hour curve at 50, triumphant
until something thudded under the hood,

then hissed as we drifted to the berm;
engine block cracked, her dad's Peugeot

left for the wrecker, sold for scrap.
She never could tell him how girls,

sixteen and eighteen, could get so bent on speed
they'd ignore an oil light's warning.

When my dad's Plymouth Fury hit 78,
weightless, on a crested curve of Route 136

and nearly flew into the grill
of a soda delivery truck, we swerved

toward a pole on Donna's side then
were gone before the guy hit his horn.