Pedestrian Improper

I sprint toward the other side of the highway, hoping to reach the shoulder before the car speeding in my direction reaches me. I misjudge its speed. It’s almost here and I’m only inches from the middle of the road. My only hope is this: my experience is simply a dream or a writer’s fantasy. And then, BAM! It isn’t a dream. I don’t make it across. As I fly through the air, my bones still in the process of breaking in response to the bumper smashing into my pelvis, I remember why I tried to beat the cars. It was a stupid reason, an invalid prompt that put me here, microseconds from the end. I feel the wind whistle around my ears as my body spins through the air. I must look like a rag doll. The pain of impact is slower to reach my brain than the experience of twirling in air. But it finally reaches that part of my brain that processes pain. It processes agony. My brain attempts to meld horror, agony, flight, and regret into a tolerable ball of experience. It fails. I feel rage that I attempted to sprint across the freeway. I feel anger than my feet were older than they once had been, and slower. I feel regret that my worst decision was my last. The pavement, wet with rain and gasoline, charges at me like a rabid dog, ready to rip into me and swallow my life as if it never mattered. As the pavement drinks in my flesh, I recall my first time behind the wheel. I was confident and arrogant. And I almost t-boned an old woman driving an invisible Buick. The pavement swallows me. I am gone.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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