NEWSFLASH- OCT. 10, 1975
Retired Korean Vet, PD, brings 19 year oldpoetgirl up from Berkeley to the wilderness of String Creek in old, but well-preserved Cadillac.While driving, he calls her crazy with her ineptmap. He calls her unprepared with her LittleHouse books by Laura Ingells and her Kerouaccollection and bundles of poems, but no kerosenelamps for reading late into the late wild animalnoise of night. He asks her if she knows how tobuild a fire. She remembers a fireplace she oncelived with. She remembers a woodstove in Beatty,Nevada and shudders. He asks her if sheremembered matches and she fingers the tobaccopouch in her flannel shirt pocket. He hatesdumping her beside the Depression-Era cabin withholes in the floor and two broken windows withher thrift store clothes and her broken cowboyboots. He walks the yard like he did when onpatrol in Korea years ago; sighs deep: he is in aforeign country now, he thinks, then slips her atwenty. She wonders how she’ll spend it all theway out here. She kisses him
on thebalding head. He reminds her of her dad.After he leaves, she looks around the silentclearing, she hums crazy little bits of rocknroll,then digs deep into childhood radio,
Not a mother or dad, not a face I could see. They knew not myname, I knew not their faces, they were all rank strangers to me.
But she is the stranger here. She hears the hiss andrattle of an unknown bird. She feels the trees judging her and she doesn’t even know theirnames. She is a hundred and fifty miles fromknowing the name of anyone. She wonders if shehas a name in the middle of the woods ten milesfrom a town she has never heard of before. Shewonders if her name disappeared on the last leftturn onto the dirt road just past the dilapidated mailboxes. She is beyond the beginning of the road.She is in the middle of the road with no one. Thereis no one to call her by name.