Headlights. This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

October 30, 2011
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I didn’t get to see the headlights.

Lying on the cool, grey carpet, I could only see flashes of streetlights zoom through the window above. They were here and gone, here and gone in a millisecond. Like shooting stars they were, in my own personal sky.

I would have preferred a seat, a seat belt. But SHE wasn’t yet seventeen, so two passengers were made to look like one. And so on. I guess I didn’t mind too much. The dark was soothing, embraced in shadows I relaxed.

The music was loud, but not loud enough. The bass shook the floor, the window panes, my chest. But I wanted it louder, too loud to think. But the girl on the floor said nothing, and spoke only to shadows. Closing my eyes, I listened. Not to THEM in the front seat, shouting over the music. They spoke with tongues of silver and lead, honey so easily poisoned if one took the care to listen. I listened, usually.

But not this time.

This time I wanted the music louder, the car faster, the air colder, and my senses sharper. I wanted to feel alive, feel pin-sharp: every inch in hyper-focus. I dug my nails into my arm to hold on with reality.

The lights passing my window pulsed faster, like an EKG approaching cardiac arrest. The honey voices in the front grew louder and bitter. The music danced tribally in my mind, beating my every sense into submission. It was loud enough, but just.

I felt every rotation of the tires.
I felt the shadow’s cold embrace.
I felt the music vibrating my every atom.

I felt the impact. I heard the sirens. I saw the lights. Edited blips of audio surfaced into my conscience, held at bay to stem the pain.

And I felt everything.
And I felt nothing.
I was alive.

Or was I?

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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

natty5 said...
Nov. 8, 2011 at 9:49 pm
I love how you separated the sentences--its really effective!
KirstenBrandes This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 9, 2011 at 11:58 pm
Thank you very much!
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