At a ‘Cars of the future’ seminar for seniors
standing at the lectern, I roll the slides out
while a laser pointer dances on the blueprint.
‘The best brains of the industry present,’ I shout,
‘the car of tomorrow, Ladies and gentlemen!’
‘This baby senses lane dividers,’ I tell them, ‘reads
traffic lights, sees obstacles in front, adjusts speed
steps on the brake and negotiates turns when it needs.
Of my audience, the lady with horn-rimmed glasses
twitching on her nose, in the front row of the seminar
seems the most mesmerized. ‘It won’t be long,’ I add,
‘before you can put your great-grandchild in your car,
and tell it to take your precious to her school. Hearing
your voice, this baby will safely complete the mission
driverless.’ “What’s more,” I conclude with a flourish,
“you won’t believe how low it is on carbon emission.”
After the talk, I watch the lady - glasses and all -
standing in line, waiting her turn to shake my hand;
and I braze to be embarrassed by fawning words.
“That was neat,” she says when she gets to me. “And
it reminded me of my childhood. In the mornings,
my dad would seat me on our pony, foot in the stirrup,
and tell her to take me to school, and she would. And only
the horse-poop – so good for our farm- to clean up.”