Car Wash in Echo Park

Feb 20, 2013
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Just me, the kid, and random vatos
hosing down our precious autos.

A carvac hiccups, coughs and whines.
With hard work, fenders almost shine.

A single boom box emits notes,
and from our unsuspecting throats

the dark blue of a song we know
rises like a u.f.o.

We belt it out. Then almost blush,
lean harder on the worn scrub brush.

I call my kid who says good-bye
to other kids who don’t reply.

We drive away, as cool as ice.
She taps my hand. “You guys sang nice.”


Copyright © “Car Wash in Echo Park” by Ron Koertge

Ron KoertgeAsk Ron Koertge what he brings to the realm of young adult fiction and he responds matter-of-factly. “I write dialogue well, and am funny. I like iconoclasm and practice it in my fiction. I don’t like pretense or hypocrisy. I’m almost always irreverent.”

Ron Koertge is the author of many celebrated novels, including Stoner & Spaz, Strays, and The Brimstone Journals, all American Library Association Best Books for Young Adults; Shakespeare Bats Cleanup, American Library Association Top Ten Sports Books for Youth Selection; and The Arizona Kid, an American Library Association pick for “one of the ten funniest books of the year.” A two-time winner of the PEN Literary Award for Children’s Literature, Ron lives in South Pasadena, California.

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