Poetry

Ten Taxi Drivers

Nat, the fifth, was a hilarious man

who warned against having too much fun.

Story by Max Henderson - maxwell.p.henderson@gmail.com Doodle by Luigi Scarcella

Cash Cab Doodle ©Luigi Scarcella

The first was a large, strong man, with a deep, smooth voice

who told us all about the culture of New Orleans

and the strength of the town. How New Orleans

had survived a hurricane that killed

and an oil spill that ravaged the coast.

And to beware the Nephilim of Kentucky.

Our second driver had a pace of molasses

both in driving and diction, but was also just as sweet.

The third was a man who went by the name of Clue.

Believed sex to be spiritual and Bourbon Street corruptive.

That New Orleans doesn’t know how to handle business.

And, in one way or another, rich people have figured out

a way to make you a minority, regardless of your skin;

they have too much to work with besides.

Is finally completing renovations on a dump truck.

Stan the fourth was from a small Russian province

and spoke not only Russian, but Romanian, German, and English.

He wants to be an accountant, and told us that the entire city

was run by three families in the mafia.

Try as he might, learning an American accent was difficult

and according to him, women are better at that then men.

Nat, the fifth, was a hilarious man

who warned against having too much fun.

Talking fondly of his five children, four of whom

never really strayed too far from Louisiana

and the fifth, who vowed to never come back

left for sixth months, and then vowed

never to leave again.

The sixth was Peter, and he did not speak.

The seventh was also the third,

and Clue revealed that the original moon landing

was a fake; he could tell they just weren’t bouncing quite right.

Eighth, was KV.  He didn’t believe I was from Philadelphia,

(where I currently live), nor my home state, (wherein:

I have spent my life) – but he did believe that for some reason,

I was a German born national; apparently my accent

has picked up some interesting contours.

Grace was our ninth driver, and the first woman cabbie

I’d ever had the pleasure of knowing. She was a brave woman,

and had a smile that was dauntingly genuine.

She was married to a preacher-man,

and didn’t hide how she loved her liquor

or how she believed it helped her marriage,

because after all – who has time

for sober sex?

She had a small, worn giraffe (of the stuffed animal persuasion)

on her dashboard, the last remaining relic

of her son’s house, washed away in Katrina.

The tenth and last, was Dave.

He spoke Creole, and not to us.

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