It was cold that night.

I suppose he thought he needed

that beer to warm him.

He was alone,

and he hadn't been warm in a while.

His speedometer climbed

steadily upward

as he tipped the bottle

and felt the sweet bitterness

slide down his throat.

He drank until the

slideshow of her pictures faded.

Eyes closed, he shook away her memory,

and tipped the bottle

again.

This seemed like a long road.

He'd never been here before.

He supposed this was where you went

when you'd already been everywhere else.

He closed his eyes

again

on his despairing world.

He didn't see the turn;

never would.

Would never see the green LeSabre

on its way home from a long night at the office.

The pickup unconsciously swerved

and the point of impact shook him.

Wouldn't see the Buick rise before him,

silhouetted against the yellow moon.

Closed eyes.

Now it's not dark.

Lights of various colors lit up the freeway.

He was killed on impact,

it was said.

His eyes were closed.

He couldn't have known that

that man

had kids,

a wife,

family who depended on him.

He never saw the man.

No second chance.

No time for apologies.

He died without the images of

the shattered glass

reflected in his eyes.

He didn't hear the man

praying, moaning;

didn't hear his last words.

No.  He died with his eyes closed.

He couldn't see

the blood on the highway.