by Lylanne Musselman
In the backseat of our ’66 green Pontiac Bonneville, my view was of the back of my parent’s heads: dad with dark wavy hair, hands on the steering wheel, his pipe smoke swirling upward and back into my space; mom with coiffed hair, in the passenger’s seat chewing her Juicy Fruit gum. I was along for the ride each Sunday going to see my grandma who lived an hour away in Kokomo. I loaded up the backseat with my favorite stuffed animals and a few books in hopes of making time cruise a bit faster. I hated leaving other beloved belongings behind, feeling guilty for all that couldn’t go. I loved listening to the radio, Fort Wayne’s strong AM station, WOWO. The Beatles, Neil Diamond, The Supremes, Tammy Wynette and George Jones were played one after the other. I could’ve done without country, but dad preferred it to my favorites. I sang along with all songs that came on, even D-I-V-O-R-C-E. Mom marveled how I knew every word, saying she wished I memorized my homework like I did those songs. I worried all new song lyrics would be used up by the time I became a mom, driving with my own kids riding in the backseat.
Lylanne Musselman is an award-winning poet, playwright, and artist, living in Indiana. Her work has appeared in Pank, Flying Island, Tipton Poetry Journal, Poetry Breakfast, The New Verse News, Ekphrastic Review, and Rat’s Ass Review, among others, and many anthologies, including Resurrection of a Sunflower, poems to honor Vincent van Gogh (Pski’s Porch, 2017). A Pushcart Nominee twice, Musselman is the author of four chapbooks including the recent Weathering Under the Cat (Finishing Line Press, 2017).