Mixsonian Larry



A dark and stormy night…

I never knew when Elizabeth would be coming, staying, or leaving. She would tell me maybe Tuesday, perhaps Thursday, it might be late, maybe for dinner. I didn’t know where she was, who she was with.  She didn’t tell me, I didn’t ask.  It had been raining all afternoon, sky overcast, eighty degrees but with the rain, a heavy mist hang in the air it making it seem much cooler.  She said she might stop by in the evening, not being too specific or committing, something she had been doing more of recently.  I, the optimist, always expected her to arrive and stay the night.  I ate dinner alone, cleaned and washed my plate.  Dusk had fallen, the rain had let off to a slow but steady drizzle as I step out onto my front porch and look down the driveway in hopes to see her van coming down the road.  I breathed deep, taking in the smell of the cool, moist air and I sigh.  She’s not coming.  I step back inside and prepare for bed, striping down to my undershorts as I crawl into bed pulling the sheets up over me.  The window was open, the sound of rain dripping off the trees and roof, the cool moist air coming through the window, my thoughts drift to where she may be, who she might be with, I start to fall asleep. 

I awaken with a start, a sound, a familiar sound, the sound of a Volkswagen engine.  Could it be her? I lay there waiting.  The sound gets closer, it could be someone coming to see my neighbor Jim, I wait.  The car seems to pull into the grassy yard between Jim’s and my houses and shuts off.  I wait.  Silence. No sound of a car door opening, no sound of a car door closing, no sound of her opening my front door and calling for me.  If it was her, she would get out and come in, right?  I thought. I wait.  I then hear the sound of the engine starting, I jump up out of bed, out the bedroom door, through the living room, open the front door, out onto the porch, down the steps and I see the taillights of her van just passing  my next door neighbor, Jim’s house.  A light rain was still falling. Half-naked, dressed only in my undershorts,  barefooted, I run after her van, as it goes down the driveway, the two red taillights and bumper looking a daemon laughing at me.   I wave my arms,  but don’t cry out not wanting to disturb the neighbors.  Her van moves a little faster, my feet splashing in the puddles as I chase after her, she pulls ahead reaching the end of the driveway, me a dozen feet behind her, when without stopping, she turns onto the main road and drives away. 

I stop, my hot breath steaming in the cool air, and I collapse to my knees sobbing.  I’m not sure how long, five, maybe teen minutes later I realize I’m soaked head to foot, I’m cold, I stand up and, shoulders hunched, my tears mixing with the rain as I walk back to my house where I dry off and curl up in bed alone.

Bob Dylan
And I was standing on the side of the road
Rain falling on my shoes
Heading out for the East Coast
Lord knows I've paid some dues getting through
Tangled up in blue

Updated: 01-15-2023