Hitching Rides In The Seventies
You stood by the roadside and thumbed
by Sarah Mkhonza
Your way to the ends of the world in
The years gone by with a duffle bag
on your shoulders.
You stopped any car and hopped into
The back of vans like loaded cargo.
Nobody cared for the age of serial
Killers and rapists was not the thing
To think about. For it was a time
Of hippies and everybody loved the
Peace sign and wore it on their shirt.
The heels were also high making walking
Difficult for platforms were worn by
Men who had leather necklaces that hung
Around their necks with one cowrie bead
That told the world who they wear.
Bell bottoms and long hair told the driver
That one who leaves on less is standing
Near the road and if they want to share
A blessing they could let you be their
Angel for the day.
When you got off you offered them gas money
Which they normally refused as they buzzed
Down the road in their cars for Toyotas
Were just coming in.
Who says not that my thumb is useless
We cannot do the same for we saved the
World from pollution and shared what we
Had in the days when Uber had not come
To get every penny we have.
Some said hitch-hikers were adventurous
And some said they wanted others to carry
Them around as they lived near rivers and
Did no work avoiding to pay taxes. I thought
We got to meet the world for when we stepped
Out we were open to surprises.
Today rides do not fall from the sky
When you ask for one you risk your life
for Untold Mysteries has told us how
One picked up from near the road Ended
Up in a ditch near a river miles away
From home. This world has taken what it
Did not give in the freedom to ride