greg gerke

Jerry Muncey borrows his friend Michael’s green and white Datsun truck and drives to an intentional community in the Sierra Nevadas to visit Prue, a woman he is very interested in. On the highway he stops to aid another woman who has a flat tire and drives to her house because she can speak Polish and has a red belt in judo, things Prue can’t compete with. Jerry falls out of contact and stays with the strong Pole for close to three years until they mutually decide it is time to get on with their lives. He continues then to the intentional community, interested to see if Prue still lives there. She does and so does his friend Michael, who eventually came searching for the green and white Datsun. In fact they are a couple and have a two-year-old child named ‘Riverstone.’ Jerry is very happy to present Michael with the truck. They all have a nice laugh, then a hearty dinner. It is in the stars, Prue says, holding a cup of ginger tea in their cold hands.

They are all sleeping in the same bed the next morning, even Riverstone, who has learned to pronounce ‘Datsun.’ The group chuckles about their good fortune. When rambunctious Riverstone climbs up to the window he sees the Datsun and gleefully blows spit bubbles. Suddenly the parking brake slips and the Datsun rolls backward, slamming into the sauna built by the founders of the community, a place Riverstone thinks of as ‘hotplay.’ His mouth blooms to a circle and Riverstone turns back to see his parents and Michael staring at him with unbridled love. He blows a bubble. But somewhere in his soft head he already knows—not even if they give him one will he never, ever drive a Datsun.

Greg Gerke
JM Coetzee