She can tell by the taste of the air,
by the way that the hills are slowly greening,
that winter is really over. The sun warms
her cheeks, her arms cooling in the shade
from the roof of her old ’97 Chevy Lumina–
named after that flying doglike luckdragon
in the Neverending Story movie.
She’d read on Wikipedia two things
that cinched its naming–the luckdragon
has incredible luck in everything they do,
and, in flight, a luckdragon is in constant motion.
Falkor is held together by shower hooks
and black tape and the grace of God.
Parts of his engine is wrapped in tinfoil
and frayed bungee cord ties the trunk closed.
So on it goes: she works and works and works,
then saves up a little chunk of money.
Then Falkor eats it up. Brakes, tires, serpentine belts,
cracked gaskets, brakes, thermostat, water pump,
tires, tires, tires.
She’d put a little money from each check away for months
into a secret savings account down at the BB&T,
always planning. In three months, she wants
to propose to her girlfriend in Pigeon Forge Tennessee,
where they will rent a log cabin,
where they will go to bookstores and eat
at good restaurants. She wants to take a sky lift
as high into the Smokies as they can go
and look at all the mountains spreading around them.
There she will pop the question
with her momma’s wedding band.
Early spring still has its cold nights,
but she likes the season. Much better weather—
especially when compared to another endless winter.
When she was a kid, she loved the spring
the most, watching the world animate around her.
Colors seemed brighter in the spring.
As an adult, she likes how colors are everywhere now,
even here. It wasn’t what she had expected,
finally somehow better.