[37] Translation, James Miller

It was still possible to cross state lines, trying for a change of scene. One year he taught nights near the border. In spring, she wanted to visit gambling country in Louisiana. They circled round Lake Charles in his gurgling Pontiac, unable to determine their speed because the dashboard needles floated, unmoored like baubles in a bathtub.

Neither suggested stopping for a walk, or a meal.

At the gas station, they bought sodas and M&Ms, opened the bottles and sucked, gagged: no syrup, no sweetness.

Halfway back to Texas, they talked about God’s half-assed technique. His lazy lyrics, clotted with sani-wipe metaphor, rarely worth licking clean.

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