It remained an ugly car. Teeth grille like a gaping buck eyed doe smiling in the moonlight, yellow boxed sheet steel pressed back around the bare metal tub of an interior vacant to radio or upholstery. In winter, or pelting rain you could throw up the misery of side curtain windows, black rubber with cataract milk vinyl eyes. They didn't keep the rain or snow out only your eyes from the four lane.
The seats are gone now, sent packing to rats nests, birds lairs and the occasional dog. The cars left side lies low on ratted rubber red rust rims under the broad gaps of daylight Michigan barn where he left it years ago steeped in tea howling away the moon end to bachelor days and nights. He bought it at 17, a war refugee with a Willy's name plate, garage painted in the midwest landscape. He drove home proudly, then blew a rod before it was three hours old, sending the rod air mail through cylinder steel to a loved one in another state where it was treated with mantelpiece kindness and placed by a lamp singing nightly lost love, long ago.
To me the car was canvas, stretched taught, thumped gleefully with forefinger, Picasso image to five year old eyes. I nozzled black streaks across the side panels, western landscapes of Cowboy and Indian, went left across its back, dark moody Kansas hurricanes, 'cause I liked Dorothy and she needed a home.
About the time I finished a portrait of Dancing Bear on the left rear tire, Mom showed. I think she was a bit miffed. I don't recall all of the filigree but I don't think she shared in my enthusiasm for the additions to my brothers car, perhaps she would have preferred blue paint and not the black. Well this is what's left of the can of spray paint, there's not much in it probably enough for a fender or part of the hood. If I were you I'd keep an eye out for Mom.

#745B1, Spray Can, $3.95

 

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