Ring Seller

William Powley

When we stop at Navajo Junction,

we see a girl’s braid

drop down the center

of her bare back.

We ignore her as she sells

with her brown fingers

blue-green turquoise rings

cheaply laid out

at fifteen dollars each.

She licks her brown lips,

smiles when she sees my bare

ring finger. I look away

as she points at a ring

zigzag by her hot pink

toenails. Yet she looks

into my cheek bones

for one whole second,

our meeting somehow permanent.

When I hear the tailpipe

on my father’s ’67 Chevy burst out

a button of black smoke,

in my mind I touch her lips,

her brown cheeks

with my fingers

and run to the car.