Eclipse: On Doing This Day Alone

Sitting in traffic
alone in my car
feeling isolated
yet connected with the universal story
of Transit
people moving themselves
from one state to another
after having been with families

Here I sit in a traffic jam
trying to make it to the global event
alone in my car
listening to music and podcasts and news
thinking about the choices
I’ve made in my past that led to
This Moment In Time
Where I now I sit,
again, alone.

I could have tried harder,
asked more people,
spoken my truth
about the fact that
I really didn’t want to do this alone
I could have not tried to trick
by thinking it would be romantic
or telling myself that
this is the story of my life
My path
that I just do these things alone

Maybe when I get there
I’ll meet some awesome family
looking to adopt a fifth or a sixth
Maybe I will find the time to write
and finish reading that book
I’ve been trying to get through
for a couple of weeks now

Maybe this journey is meant to be
my last one alone
maybe this is resolution time
maybe this is the moment
where I commit to make different choices
so that the next road trip
will not be alone.

Maybe I need to remember how lucky I am
Because 20 minutes ago
a kayak fell off the back of a car
Not far in front of me.
I could be having that day…

Or I could be having a day
where the five of us cars that
needed to swerve out of the way
of the flying kayak didn’t do so well

Maybe that connection feeling
to the global story is
All I Need.

Somewhere, perhaps
just a few cars away,
there could be another
middle-aged woman
sitting alone, having
the exact same experience I am.
Perhaps there is a
young college student
from a rural place
who hasn’t had a chance
to make friends at his new
urban university who’s sitting
in his jenky old truck

This is not a day
we are meant to be alone.
I feel you, friends,
even if I can’t see you.
Let us find each other
In the path of totality.



I was totally right. I’ve never been better at calling one in the air. As soon as I got here, I got adopted by two families (long-time neighbors and friends to each other), who insisted I join their picnic and science hootenanny, and met another single woman from Atlanta who has also been invited into the pack.


Add yours →

  1. Kathie deNobriga August 23, 2017 — 6:01 pm

    Loved this poem. As you will recall, I invited you to join our little crew in the mountains, and perhaps it was better to be alone on that day. On that day, a convivial group of family and friends enjoyed a glorious Sunny Sunday and Monday morning, only to watch the clouds roll in….and roll in…and roll in, one impenetrable layer after another. We got to see the sun for exactly the first 15 seconds of the eclipse, and then for the next 90 minutes, sat on our blankets in the meadow and waited for the darkness


    • Thanks! I do indeed remember your kind invitation, and that was one of the moments I was evaluating when sitting there mulling over all my choices that lead me to be alone in the car. If you can believe it, I actually drove all the way to Lutheridge and back that day. It was a looooong day. I’m so sorry to hear you didn’t get to see the actual totality. It was spectacular. I’m really glad I made myself go.


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