The Red Light

I sit in the only westbound car, waiting for the red light
While the cross traffic zips by.
I cheat and peak at their light to see it turn yellow
To get a head start, I’m so sly.

My fingers massage the wheel, letting the car know I’m ready
And together we watch the light… stay red.
The cars across from me start moving, released from crimson restraint
They get to go left or right or straight ahead.

“It’s part of the cycle of life” and “East comes before West”
I explain to the carload of expectation.
The sun slips minutely, the sky darkens slightly, the light changes silently
And the cross traffic resumes, skipping my rotation.


Crushed, forgotten, lonely, envious, frustrated, empty, motherless:
I blush back at the light, clenching my fist.
I ask the only question that makes sense, the one I can’t answer,
“Do I actually exist”.

“Has the cosmos, and more to the point, has the light forsaken me?”
And together, the cosmos and I watch the light with concern.

The opposing forces, the oncoming traffic triumphs,
Then once again the cross traffic skips my turn.

I’ve heard that the road has sensors, built in detectors,
The intersection’s welcome mat.
I pull the car up, I slide the car back, I shift the car over
And hope the light senses that.

But I continue to not exist, maybe I’m really not going anywhere.
I watch the passing faces
Some are longing, some are grateful, some are proud
Because they get to find their places.

Some are oblivious to my suffering, to what seems my final destination
While others are obviously mocking me.
Some are more sinister, giving me great concern,
They are clearly cooperating with this conspiracy.

I guess misery does love company because now two cars wait behind me,
I must have pulled them into my hell.
I blush again, I’m embarrassed, I’m a failure,
My failure to exist has trapped them as well.

I pity them for following me on the road to nowhere,
A drive down the world’s truest parkway.
But I suppose it’s their own fault for not knowing whom they got behind
And my fault for losing my way.