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"The Hitchhiker"

A universal symbol is the thumb,
Recognized by all, but ignored by most.
And I'm walking along the highway.
It's cold,
But my shirt is soaked with sweat.
The airstream from a passing semi
Sucks the hat from my head
And I run to retrieve it,
Leaning over the guardrail,
Before it blows away.
My hair falls into my eyes.

I look like shit.
And I probably smell like it too
But I have no way of knowing
Because my nose is stuffed up.

I'm exhausted.
But I can't stop walking.
I must be Ever vigilant,
For the next car
May be my next ride.

Eventually, I stop to rest.
Lying down by the side of the road.
I can't sleep.
It's too cold to sleep.
But my back could use a rest
From carrying my bags.
And my feet
From carrying me.

A little while later, I'm back on my feet, and a cop car shows up
Followed by an ambulance.
It seems a concerned motorist had made a call
About a body lying by the road.
"That must've been you" he says.
And he offers me a ride
To the end of his jurisdiction.
It's only a few miles,
And I'll have to ride in the back,
But it's better than nothing,
So I accept.

It bothers me
That a passing motorist would be more concerned
About a dead man
Lying by the side of the road
Than a live one.
But only for a minute.

The cop lets me out at the turnaround,
And I have to sprint across this not-exactly-deserted highway.
Another semi whizzes by,
But this time I remember
To hold the hat on my head.
And my thumb is getting tired.

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