Heady bit of bungee jumping. This pride. Leaves you hanging ,alone at the end of it.

a poem by Rita Joyce Singh, India

New Year’s Eve Ball was an overload,
Many dances, too many ‘ one for the road’.
Half way home I said, “I’ll drive, you’re in no condition.”
“No way!” ….“I’m fine.” Was that admonition?

I persisted, “I’ll drive!” “I will!”
“Girl, don’t give me that drill,
You haven’t driven in……. fifteen years.”
“O.K, I’ll show you!” I said in tears.

“Oh! O.K, go ahead, just be careful to drive,
Get us home if you can and alive.”
“Are you talking to me!”
“Calm down, it’s a bad fog, keep a look-see.”

Pride, now arrogant, burst up the ignition,
Pride , quite smirky, jerked the car in motion.
He jumped, “ Hey! Read that warning indication!”
Followed by , “Stoppp! Brrrakke!!!! Left door is open! “ A far off caution.

I sped, unheeding, went front wheels over a culvert,
Headlights stared at a five feet drop, canal divert.
What was stalling my inevitable crashing, doom?
Doing 100 m.p.h…my husband, in that foggy gloom!

He was out the open door, running astride, racing to save my bender,
Leaping! Flying lizard! All fours, mid air, losing the door to catch the rear fender,
“Houuld it ! Ooooorrrre darrll-liiinngg! Despaired his scream!
This was not happening! A bad, bad dream!

He held till his arms ached, then the rear wheels crunched over,he finally let go,
Front wheels nosedived yet, his drag broke the impact to slow.
Shaken but safe, I sobbed, in aftershock, loud , unladylike and messy,
Heard myself over the canal waters lap-lapping the car chassis.

He rushed down and thru that open, scratched,swinging door,
Held me so tight, so tight, my breath tore.
Hysterical, I giggled, “Sweetheart, I heard you scream, ‘ hold it!Oh darling!’ ”
“Hell No way!” He said, “I screamed… ‘Stupid, you’re dangling!’ ”

“I see!” “Are- you- talking- to- me!”
That cracked him, “ No, you don’t see , yes, I’m talking, listen for once, carefully,
ONE, you’re a road menace if you don’t re-learn to drive,
It’s called re-start , re-test, re-cap, re-new license, REVIVE!”

“TWO, a car is first and foremost a hearse!”
Watch the road, re-bound, re-act, re-flex, there’s no time to rehearse or reverse!”
You’ll live…….to tell, if you drive slow and well,
You drive bad, it’s your own funeral!”

“And, in case you haven’t noticed, since we’ve been married,
I’ve been on tenterhooks!!! …and ha!....er..uh.uh..yes!.. I meant ha!”
I queried, “Ha what?”
“ Ha !” He said, “Ha…as in harried!”

“For, I don’t know you in your .. pride,
Is it some elbow space where you can hide?!”
“What a propensity to bungee off on all issues!”
(My nose bubbled and popped - a big, blown, teary, bubble, I needed tissues)

“Here.” He said, handing me one,
“Tears! Aw ! Give me a break! Just, what have I done!”
“Saved your proud neck at a run!”
Bungeeing off a culvert???! Is that your… i-d-e-a… of fun !!!?”

“You tell me, if loving you is my curse?”
“So be it! Your bungee jumping is far worse!”
“”Oh! No! Not another tear!”
“Easy, easy …….look at the bright side! We made it into the New Year!”

“Let us get a move on……. home is a long, long walk.”
And, if drunk I could save you , surely, sober I can talk.
I have pride too, but not the same as ego,
Your pride is extreme, the dreaded Line of Maginot!”

“Pride is HEADY…. ‘darling’….. but a pure, pure, blood drawing itch,
Pride to dust, you’ll bungee before time, into your own six foot ditch,
Don’t ever do this to me again, that was a narrow BIT,
One of us will be LEFT HANGING…sadly.. ALONE…….AT THE END OF IT!”

Note: My husband is a certified motor instructor courtesy army training and has never had an accident..I am his worst student and driver in the world. One of the reasons I don’t drive is that repairs, maintenance is extremely high cost even with insurance…it is a no claim if driver’s negligence is proved.

Also, at first I thot not to enter then reconsidered ..the title was troubling me too.

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