Dan Denton

Driving in Toledo in December

in December
in Toledo
people drive
like they’re dead inside
like they don’t have
loved ones
in brightly lit
warm homes

in December
when the zombie sky
is crawling gray all day
when the sun
punches out
your work day ends

people drive
through 5pm night
like they’ve never read
a Tom Robbins book
like they’ve never lusted
for a strong cup of coffee
or a soft, compliant lover

in December
when the semi-trucks
turn snow drifts black
when radio commercials peddle
Wall Street’s vision of a merry Christmas

people drive
like they’ve never heard
a grandchild laugh
like they’ve never been kissed goodbye
or goodnight
or good morning


Dan Denton is a writer and UAW autoworker. His writing has appeared in over three dozen magazines, newspapers, zines, and anthologies, most recently The Museum of Americana, Of Rust and Glass, and Toledo Streets Newspaper. His first novel $100-A-Week Motel (Punk Hostage Press) released in Jan of 2021, and he has forthcoming books from both Punk Hostage and Gutter Snob Presses. He lives in Toledo with his wife, and over a thousand books.