by Sheri Perl-Oshins
She was practically born on the back of her father’s motorcycle, learning to navigate with the wind in her face at 60 mph. Her father’s broad back kept her somewhat sheltered.
She learned to position the map the way they were headed on the road so she wouldn’t accidentally say, “turn left,” when she meant “turn right” and they’d end up in Toledo.
This time they were headed to the Amish Country, PA. “Which way,” he yelled over the roar of the wind.
“Make a left onto Bird in Hand Road and then a right at the fork.”
He knew he could trust her directions, after all he had taught her. And no daughter of his would read a map like a girl. It was the same with driving a stick too. “My daughters drive like men, aggressive behind the wheel, smooth with the gears, and hugging the inside of curves.”
But how could she tell him this summer things had changed, despite map reading and driving a stick. She had unwillingly become a woman. He wouldn’t want to know but fear buzzed like an electric wire in her brain. “This is why daughters need mothers,” she thought to herself.
As the darkness engulfed her, she convinced herself she was still a virgin and no one would ever need to know.
She studied the map in-between whizzing streetlamps and wished it could help navigate her through this slippery world of sex for a motherless girl.