Driving the Deep Sea Highway

I’m driving to pick up my son from school and I glance at the odometer: 32,319 miles. If I’d headed in one direction instead of back and forth to my son’s school and to work, I could have motored all the way around the globe along the equator by now. I would have passed through the Congo with the windshield wipers shoving green rain, laced up the Andes Mountains right into Ecuador, and slipped through villages in India under a moon like a glass of milk. Of course, most of my route would be underwater, watching the dolphins’ playtime from below, the sunlight prisming through the kelp forests, the schools of fish performing their silver ballets. But it would also be a pain to drive in the ocean with chameleon squids suctioned to the side of my car, turning the exact gold of my Toyota Corolla, forcing me to don scuba gear and peel them off. Yes, driving that undersea Route 66 would be quite a kick, except that once I traversed the entire equator, I would just be back where I started, picking my son up from school, kissing him hello on top of his redolent head of hair, asking him where he left his dinosaur camouflage jacket, since, like his dad, he finds a new way to lose it almost every day.

Zack Rogow is the author, editor, or translator of nineteen books or plays. His seventh book of poems, My Mother and the Ceiling Dancers, was published by Kattywompus Press in 2012. He is the editor of an anthology of poetry of the U.S.A., The Face of Poetry, published by University of California Press. Currently he teaches in the low-residency MFA in writing program at the University of Alaska Anchorage. zackrogow.blogspot.com