I was hit by a car. The first time, two years ago, crossing the street
with my sister toward church. Halfway through the crosswalk,
she made a joke about my ability to walk in heels. We were laughing.
The last thing I remember is headlights meeting her face,
seeing her mouth flatten, dimples disappearing, as she looked
straight through me to what I couldn’t see coming.
Then the light was all there was.
This time was different. Lauren was driving, July heat burning my right leg
through the car window rolled half down. We were singing as the wind
whipped our brunette and blonde hair into one. We were singing
some song and eating French fries until we weren’t. Now, it’s as though
I’m hovering, waiting. Calling bullshit on the myth about lightning not
striking the same place twice. Life is lightning.
Either stopping your heart or starting it.
—from Rattle #61, Fall 2018
Tribute to First Publication
Justy Rothe: “I write to connect my past self and experiences to my current being, to make sense of the world around me while also finding my place within it. But I also write in hopes to connect to other people. To lend a kind hand of comfort or, if just for a moment, a place of quiet shelter.”