taking an uber to my grave
Updated: Jun 19, 2022
Originally published by Bottlecap Press in Live Action Capitalism
immediately i'm greeted with the blaring
transnationalism of the obviously dominican
driver rambling away into his iphone
held up close to his ear or signals
boldly sent through bluetooth speakers,
either way stereotypically talking
to a cousin. he uses the phrase "esa vaina"
& my american ass has heard my tios mutter it
before. as with most spanish, i know feelings not exactitudes.
his language doesn't catch. google maps
says "dobla a la derecha" & my right arm
dematerializes. u-turn & i can no longer use
my nose. all smells turn to itches & every hole
is emitting fumes. he's only here with me for
the 10 dollars he'll only see 2 of. he doesn't need
to notice the dying. i don't mind. i bet
he's been driving all day & we are not friends.
speeding down a narrow street, i keep my legs
inside the vehicle as long as i still have them.
as a ghost passenger i google "vaina."
the internet says it means "thing"
or the exponentially whiter "thingamabob."
i text my mother and ask. she would know & she knows
me. mediated by the screen, she responds to
my last dying text with, "it's vulgar, don't say that,"
so i don't say that. he was never speaking to me.
he'll get 5 stars despite the volume of the global
positioning system & the surcharge & the surge tonight
& the ad that convinced him to start to drive.
if i lived in a blue place by the ocean, or if i lived
near palms and used my fingers for touch, or if i had a linguistic use for a vulgar thingamabob,
i would imagine it's something like "that shit."
Cover Photo Credit: Ava Emilione