Drive Fast Take Chances

Featured image: Kentucky Fried Chicken and Car Wash, from the Hennepin County Library (1998)

Closing myself off from the heavy Nevada air,
I escape into the Dodge Hellcat
alongside my dad and brother.
Car doors closing, the muffled engines of the Las Vegas Motor Speedway
shake my limbs loose from my body.
I take a deep breath
while the click of my seatbelt locks me in the car.
The stranger who sits in the driver’s seat
revs our engine as the gates open up into our own personal raceway.
Flooring the gas pedal,
my heart races with adrenaline to match the intensity of our ride.
Despite my wide smile,
my stomach still churns
with each uncertain turn the driver holds.
Quickly building speed,
my body presses into the leather seats
as my eyes struggle focusing
on the images speeding past the windows at 95 miles per hour.
The danger electrifies my body
while I turn to my brother
to exchange a powerful fist bump.
With every lap on the racetrack
and glimpse of beauty my eyes hold,
my body relaxes
until I lean back
and become accustomed to the greatness
that comes on the other side of danger.

Hailey Mulvihill is a freshman majoring in Biomedical Sciences and plans on entering the Physicians Assistant program. This poem was written about a personal family experience on vacation. In addition to spending time with family, she plays Club Field Hockey at Marquette and is a member of Alpha Chi Omega.

“Kentucky Fried Chicken and Car Wash,” Hennepin County Library (1998):