Yellow Sweater

United States

Zinnia | she/her | bi | agnostic | 18 | WA

2021-2022 Seattle Youth Poet Laureate

Elitist Atlantic Subscriber (jk, but I do think the Atlantic does some awsome journalism)

I don't necessarily agree with my own assertions

Message to Readers

Your thoughts on highways?

The Highway

April 15, 2021

FREE WRITING

6
It’s a clear day. The sky is blue. The grass is green. And we are driving down the highway. The journey is marked by spastic bursts of conversation and a chunkily categorized landscape. I press my nose to the glass and point. There go the suburbs, the farmlands, the mountains. We are squished between moments, reckoning with a folded horizon.  

A highway is a strip of land, paved over, with bold yellow stripes running down its center. It’s a dead snake. It’s everything it has crushed, everything it has pushed to its periphery. And it’s nothing, a vacuum with the sole purpose of transporting our consciousness from one location to another. A highway is a portal forced to exist in conventional space. It’s a portal stretched thin. 

My cousin says she finds the dirty dive bars and mangy strip malls, the nameless, thousand-mile purgatory outside the parapet, enticing. She says that everything looks more cohesive when viewed from another dimension. But I am repelled. This vantage point, this collage-like impression of time, of space, is pieced together from glances out the window. And in the rare moments of clarity, moments when the clock strikes twelve, the world is revealed with merciless explicitness. It’s unnatural to see things for what they are: flimsy, made from flimsy angles. 

I have never liked Salvidor Dali. Surrealism makes me profoundly uncomfortable. The components of a scene, of an emotion, are exposed. But it’s like experiencing space without time's wave-like lull. There is nothing holding the components together, just sporadic glances out the window. 

Print

See History
  • April 15, 2021 - 1:09pm (Now Viewing)

Login or Signup to provide a comment.

5 Comments
  • nolongeractive

    This is so amazing, I am obsessed with your viewpoints and metaphors regarding the highways. It was so unique and different in the best ways! I really connected with it because I just got my lisence and I find that I feel a piece when I am driving alone on the highway and just chilling to good music!


    6 months ago
  • Nyla

    I love your take on highways. The way you managed to tie in Dali was awesome- I totally thought you were going to go off track but nope! The ending just really made the piece. "transporting our consciousness from one location to another" was the perfect way to describe highways!
    As for my thoughts on highways, I find them to be very claustrophobic at rush hour because there's no way to get out, you're just stuck in this great expanse of cars. On a really lonely one though it's quite relaxing- especially in the countryside. It almost feels surreally beautiful at that point and I can find myself conjuring worlds so much easier. Wow, you really got me writing a whole piece on highways now XD.


    6 months ago
  • Deleted User

    re: thank you so much!!!


    6 months ago
  • ☃︎ KatelynsCupcakes ☃︎

    Re: It's totally cool! Thank you for doing one!


    6 months ago
  • solarflair

    How are you so good at explaining the mundane ;-;

    "A highway is a strip of land, paved over, with bold yellow stripes running down its center. It’s a dead snake. It’s everything it has crushed, everything it has pushed to its periphery. And it’s nothing, a vacuum with the sole purpose of transporting our consciousness from one location to another. A highway is a portal forced to exist in conventional space. It’s a portal stretched thin."

    I can't even describe the nostalgia that made me feel lol. I always travel from my city to Texas and Montana for Thanksgiving and Christmas (we spend around a week in each state and switch every year.) But anyway, I always had mixed feelings about the highway. I actually kinda missed it because we didn't go this year due to covid. I've just never heard it described better.

    *claps*


    6 months ago