The Day My 96 Ford Ranger Got Repossessed or There Will Always Be a Space for You in the Driveway of My Heart

Shane Allison

I remember it like it was last Friday morning at 5:38 a.m.

When I heard the doorbell; I thought I was dreaming.

When my eyes crept open like two old doors,

I still heard bells. Slid out of bed like a slug  

In my plaid, flannel pajamas.

Who the fuck is that this time of night,

I asked myself. Answered the door to

two blurry guys who looked Puerto Rican.  

I thought one of them was wearing a bulletproof vest

& Combat boots. Is there anything you need to get out of the truck?

One of them asked. What do you mean?

We are about to repossess your truck.  

Is there anything you need to get out of it?

There's a fee if you come by later to get anything out.

All I could do was stand there wrapped in a cocoon of shock.

Just a minute, I told them.

I left them standing in their bubble jackets, in a robe of winter.

Shut the secrets of my house in their faces

As they stood on the porch beneath a deteriorating roof.

I walked barefooted in the den, across the milk-white tile.

Stumped my toe on the leg of the dining-room table as I limped slightly

Bruised to my parents' Pepto Bismol-pink bedroom.  

Daddy, I summoned. They both grunted like goats.

These people outside are about to repossess the truck.

Repossess it, my mama screeched. Daddy hopped from the bed

In his tee shirt and tighty-whities as if there was a four-alarm fire.

I watched from the vertical blinds as they hitched my repossessed possession

Onto the tow truck. I just paid ‘em, ma said.

Daddy came in holding a handful of gospel tapes,

Folded pieces of carbon papered receipts, the two pairs of reading glasses

He bought at the Flea Market.

I can't believe you're gone.

To think I was married

To you for five years.  

The $8.95 car washes at Scrubbles.

I loved how you smelled of Pena Calada.

You made me proud glistening beneath that orange juice sun.

I changed your tires, filled your tubes & pipes with oils, fluids, Techtron gasoline.  

There is no justice in the world when complete strangers can come & take

You away from me. Jack you out of my driveway like you were a Mercedes.

When my dad showed me to you, I thought:

What am I going to do with a truck?  

But after time, I grew to love you.

I should have run after you but I was in complete disbelief.

I couldn't move.

I couldn't get my mind around it.  

Maybe you were not ready to go. Or

Maybe you were fed up with my shit:

Tired of all the strange people in your passenger seat,

Pissed at me cuz I left you for New York.

But I didn't want it to end like this my love:  

You being towed away, me hanging there like a vertical blind

Six thousand dollars poor.

It's Saturday morning. I can't help but wonder how

You're doing. You must be cold sitting in that used car lot

With all those unfamiliar vehicles.

Wish I could get you back, but Ford Motor Credit

Won't give an inch. They cut me off at the knees.

I am bleeding to death on old car notes. I'm in a paraplegic state of pain.

I'm a pissed off Nuclear missile.

My folks were suppose to take care of you

While I was away. They were suppose to keep you shining like spit,

Keep you smelling of pineapple air fresheners.  

Cruising the park isn't the same without you.

I used to tell you everything.

I'm driving my sister's Cavalier, but no one notices me

Behind her tinted windows.  

Maybe it's better this way.

Perhaps it's for the best.

You're in the hands of people who will clothe you

With a new paint job.  

They will clean your pipes & tubes & fill them with fluids

& The best in gasolines. They will care for you better then I ever could.

You must move on. We gotta put what happened, behind us. But I want you to know that there will always be a space for you in the driveway of my heart.