1964 catalina
Lead Foot
by Catfish McDaris

My granny drove her 64 Pontiac
Catalina a few miles from town,
she scooted over while I walked
around the car, I was a tall 13

It was an automatic transmission
so I dropped it into drive, we were
on red dirt roads in the middle of
sugar beet fields, I poked along

Until granny said hit it, my grandpa
called her lead foot, I made her sit
back when I goosed that new blue
car, we were flying, I hit some bumps

Our heads were knocking off the roof
top, she told me to slow down and stop,
we practiced in reverse and parking,
it was fun, I wanted to drive forever

When I was a baby granny rolled a car
in Albuquerque with me inside, we were
tossed like clothes in a dryer she broke
her fingers and couldn’t play guitar again

I still think about her singing The Streets
of Laredo and me putting on Cream’s
version of Sitting on Top of the World and
her knowing it, I don’t miss driving a bit.

PHOTO: 1964 Pontiac Catalina.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Catfish McDaris has been active in the small press world for 25 years. He shot howitzers three years in the army and used to fish and hunt as a boy in New Mexico. Sometimes he goes down to Lake Michigan and feeds seagulls and dreams of mountain horses. He was working in a wig shop in a high crime area of Milwaukee.