On my way to work this morning, I saw two cows fucking – OK, I guess it was a cow and a bull. They were right on the side of the road, no kidding. Not down in the pasture, or up the hill, but on the gravel shoulder, right there, so close that I had to slow my car to pass. And when I did, the one closest to me – the one on the bottom, the cow – looked right at me. Big bored browns, long lazy lashes. Like they know a lot but ain’t ever gonna tell. Made me think of that girl Peach – her eyes are like that. I’ve never actually talked to her, but I see her standing on the corner by the gas station. Skinny legs, rounded shoulders, bangs down to those eyes. I don’t actually think about fucking her. Well, maybe I do. But really, when I see her, I remember things I’ve nearly forgotten.
Sometimes I fill my Chevy just to have a look, and sometimes she looks back. In that moment I forget my wife who don’t look at me, kids who don’t hear me, supervisors who don’t listen. In those moments, I forget that I usually don’t look forward to much at all.
Sometimes I can’t wait to fill my Chevy.
11 responses to “Fill ’er up by Michelle Elvy”
Oh yes, I loved this story – the opening line got me and the closer was great. In between it was just what I love too – funny but also, (almost) inexplicably sad. The woman at the petrol station (as we call them, or die Tankstelle, and you know what I mean) sounds like a scrag. The cow sounds much prettier! (Where is this story set, it seemed like NZ! Well done, I love stories like this.
I should also have said, sexy and hopeless!
I like the comparison between the cow and the woman and his reasons for ‘fueling up.’ Good work!
I really like the voice you used for this one!
I loved this story, Michelle. Great voice and character. I am always a fan of the odd epiphany type story. Although, growing up in rural Wisconsin, I have literally seen this happen.
nice, lusty metonymy
A really great snapshot of where so many end up, surrounded by indifference, looking for that one little bright spot, no matter how ephemeral. Which I was not expecting given the opening. Just a really great story.
“Sometimes I can’t wait to fill my Chevy.”
good one. so glad your muse stopped hiding after last’s week in-between-story.
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Hey all – THANK YOU for those comments! Wow. Glad this one worked. And by the way: this was inspired by a true story: I really did see two cows fucking on the side of the road on the way to work, about two months back. This one has been lurking for a while, finally got it on paper for this week’s theme.
So lively and vivid. The pith and the cheek and the Peach! “Sometimes I can’t wait to fill my Chevy” really winds it up. Yes, it’s funny and sobering at once. “I remember things I’ve nearly forgotten” is a wistful note perfectly played.