The Exploding Car

 

by Morgan Hobbs

 

The key turns and the ignition squeals. A fireball rolls through the underground garage. Promises made across glass divides, prayers in tight spaces. A passenger train jumps the tracks. Buckled steel and flashing lights. Rain soaked blacktop imagining the night. A crack in the dash, a web in the shatter proof glass. A headlamp dangles from the socket. A man in a black cowboy hat takes head shots of innocent bystanders. Wheels spinning in the rearview mirror, a line of cherries on the asphalt, a car on its back, jackpots and speaker wires. Back seat baby tries to hide her surprise, as the screen melts and the giant profiles dissolve in blazing photos of projector light. An oil slick spreading out for miles and miles. On the seaside cliff a home for ex-race car drivers. Rolling blackouts and sport-tuned caskets, reenactments of famous crashes. Singed hair and autobiographical matter. The adjuster takes a swab from inside the blinking brake light, the merlot interior splattered with red wine. No accident. The cars hit the bend, flying off the track one after the other into the smoking canyon. A blast of static at the finish line. The tractor trailer jack-knifes, spilling a load of caviar on the highway. The photo finish captured in a fly’s compound eye, a thousand fragments of broken glass. The super-tanker explodes on impact, red wine gushing from the ruptured cask, flooding the tarmac. The driver steps from the car. The checkered flag flying in the night like a burning oil rag. A spark, a dropped cigarette, and a drunken fire.

 

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Morgan Hobbs‘ work has appeared in Mississippi Review, Pindeldyboz, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Hollywood Dementia, Mudlark, The Cabal, Shattered Wig, Nocturnal Lyric, Satire and others. He recently published the dark comic novel I’m the Bomb, about a diabolical movie mogul.

 

 

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