Volume 23, Number 2

Driving a Truck in Afghanistan

Barry Basden

Coming off the ridge line, he shifts gears and speeds onto the barren desert floor. He's saving the family farm in Tennessee. Soon, he is daydreaming, back to high school again, flirting with Susan beneath Friday night lights.

He doesn't remember a flash, but the air is now raw in his throat. He is upside down, his head just above the dust, hanging by what feels like wire around his ankles. Somewhere dogs are barking. Then women in burkas begin wailing and bearded men with knives come toward him. He knows it's too late to be anywhere else.