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First Love
Pat Hale


My first car was an orange VW — 
a squareback, no Cadillac — 
with a broken gas gauge, 
seats repaired with baling wire, 
and an imaginary heater. 
It taught me about cracked blocks, 
clogged carburetors, bad bearings, 
and love that has no obvious 
correlation to virtue or logic. 
I cried when I sold it for 100 dollars 
after it left me stranded 
on a winter highway. 
Never gave away my heart again 
quite so freely.

© by Pat Hale. 
Used with the author’s permission.

Pat Hale is a Connecticut poet with fond memories of her childhood in western Pennsylvania. 
She has loved to read and write since she was a little girl. Pat’s award-winning work has appeared in many journals and she facilitates a writing group modeled on the Amherst Writers and Artists method.


Post New Comment:
Beautiful! Your poem brings to mind my childhood love for my father's 56 Chevy truck. Of course I didn't do the maintenance but I did cry when, parked on the curb, its' axle broke plowed into two by a drunken driver. Her sedan sprawled exhausted on our dull street in the California sunshine.
Posted 01/23/2012 05:25 AM
Ginny C.:
Car memories...they've obviously struck a cord. Another classic, Pat!
Posted 01/19/2012 05:22 PM
Mine was a purple Chevy Impala that I bought for $100. Seemed like a lot at the time, but it got me through my college years!
Posted 01/19/2012 02:03 PM
My ex and I bought an old orange VW van in about 2001--it was in good shape then. There's a long story to how it went downhill, but I will spare you the details. Loved your poem... Anjie
Posted 01/19/2012 11:08 AM
mine was an ancient red, Ford convertible...died a quiet death by the side of an interstate... nice!
Posted 01/19/2012 09:50 AM
nadia ibrashi:
What fun. Loved "imaginary heater."
Posted 01/19/2012 09:21 AM
My orange VW was my first love too. Good poem.
Posted 01/19/2012 08:54 AM
VW Beetles were and are my passion. Maybe it was because we were young and more accepting of car adventures or should I say misadventures. Great poem!
Posted 01/19/2012 08:35 AM
oh yes, i remember the imaginary heaters. great poem!
Posted 01/19/2012 07:54 AM
I still regret selling my '56 Chevy just because it was rusting out. Never had a better car since. Thanks!
Posted 01/19/2012 07:15 AM
nancy scott:
Been there, but it was a brown Hudson and drank a quart of milk each week.
Posted 01/19/2012 06:01 AM
rusty steed
Posted 01/19/2012 05:20 AM

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