So we drove, me and Mom and Dad, we drove around Handsome like we were gypsies, riding our own little caravan to nowhere. Scrap houses with cracking whitewash porches and washboard lawns. Buffalograss as yellow as parchment. I felt a primal ache seeing those ragged houses; all of them the same, beaten down by neglect, and I knew we belonged to the same lost tribe. Something ran deep and sad in me those days, like brown tap water. You know you can handle it in yourself, but when you see all that ruination, it brings a catch to your throat. All you can think about is sorrow upon sorrow. I could tell it ran in my father, too, by the lonesome look in his eyes.
I see those oversized streets, cracks streaming through the pavement like spilled syrup, rusted oil tanks skulking behind tangles of horseweed. Everything is the same brown crayon smudge.