Once, as I was leaving a 7-Eleven,
I collided with a woman coming in.
“Well hey there Billie Jean,” she laughed, “watch where you’re going, girl.”
Catching my blank stare, she said,
“You ARE Billie, aren’t you? You look exactly like her.”
I didn’t answer, stunned that I’d been given a name for the woman who lived in my mind and haunted my dreams, the woman who’s all I’m not, the woman I’d like to be.
She’s an extrovert and I’m the opposite, a risk-taker where I’m timid, the life of the party while I’m often the death of it.
Billie Jean does as she pleases. I try too hard to please others.
She’s a tough talkin’ mama. I can’t say boo to a goose.
Billie doesn’t age. I’ve stopped counting birthdays.
She’s the light of the world to my dark night of the soul.
Billie drives a yellow convertible I was too shy to buy.
She’s behind the wheel right now, cruising in another reality.
The top is down and her red hair’s a-flyin’.
The radio’s blasting a bluegrass tune about love and loss and hooch and hormones and she’s singing at the top of her lungs, not caring at all that she’s out of control and over the limit and courting a speeding ticket.