Maine poet, Marcia Brown, says "I think everyone has one love affair with a car. For me, it was my brand-new 1994 Saab convertible — dark green with a tan roof. I loved that car." But after seventeen years of Maine winters, it was time for Marcia to retire her venerable convertible and get new wheels — but not without a few pangs of regret. She describes the transition in her poem titled "When I Look at the Old Car," which was published in her collection What on Earth (Moon Pie Press, 2010).
On June 11, 2010, Garrison Keillor chose the poem to read on his daily NPR Writers Almanac broadcast. "I was so honored and thrilled to have Mr. Keillor read my work," Brown says. "Millions of people hear and see your poem when it appears on the Writers Almanac." So when the time came to let her car go, Marcia Brown says she couldn't think of anything more appropriate than donating it to the Car Talk Vehicle Donation Program where proceeds would benefit her local Maine Public Broadcasting station, WMEA Portland 90.1. "I'm addicted to Morning Edition on my way to work and All Things Considered on my drive home, Writers Almanac, of course, and Prairie Home Companion on Saturday evenings. Oh, and Car Talk, too, if I'm driving around Saturday mornings! Donating the car seemed to bring the saga full circle, and in some small way, express my appreciation for NPR and Garrison Keillor's extraordinary work in the service of poetry. I hope some Saab lover will buy the car at auction and keep it running. It's kind of famous now."
"When I Look at the Old Car" by Marcia F. Brown, from What on Earth. © Moon Pie Press, 2010. Reprinted with permission.