woman driver driving school panic calm
I Have a Non-Driver License
From the DMV
by Alarie Tennille

So you’ll know my name
when I don’t hit you.
Don’t worry. I’m quite good
at non-driving — no tickets
on my record, never
even a warning.

I drove once —
about 30 feet down the driveway.
My brother yelled, “Stop.”
I stomped the brake. He claims
I tried to put him through
the windshield.

I took driver’s ed, but only
the classroom portion. That’s all
I need, because believe me,
driving on paper is the only way
to keep you safe.

IMAGE: “Driving school panic” by studiostoks, used by permission.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Although I made light of it, not driving is a nuisance and not purely by choice. I’m visually impaired. When I was 16, my ophthalmologist said I would fail the vision test, but he could write me a waiver. I declined getting a license to kill.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Alarie Tennille was born and raised in Portsmouth, Virginia, and graduated from the University of Virginia in the first class admitting women. She misses the ocean, but loves the writing community she’s found in Kansas City, Missouri. Alarie serves on the Emeritus Board of The Writers Place. Alarie’s poetry collection, Running Counterclockwise, was First Runner Up for the 2015 Thorpe Menn Award for Literary Excellence.  She’s also written a chapbook, Spiraling into Control, and her poems have appeared in numerous journals including Margie, Poetry East, I-70 Review, Midwest Quarterly Review, and Southern Women’s Review. Visit her at alariepoet.com.