Auto Destruct
Damian Dressick

The students all wrote about car accidents. One by one, two at a time, sometimes whole vehicles at once -- packed as if with circus clowns -- the students killed off their parents, siblings, friends and lovers. Some, they decapitated. Some bled out. Some were made to suffer for years on lumpy suburban hospital beds in comas as even their most dutiful chums said "fuck it" and swapped strained afternoon visits for boyfriends or Wii tennis or new water bongs packed with hydroponically grown pot.
Otherwise disparate, the students narratives invariably contained cars crashing into banks or shopping malls, splashing into lakes or flying from sheer, dun-colored cliffs a la Thelma and Louise. Stolen Chevys burned through the night in bad parts of town like wounded flares. Low slung convertibles raced toward long planned dream weddings that would never end in ugly custody battles or serial infidelities or acrimonious divorce and were then unceremoniously T-boned by geriatric hog farmers with sclerotic livers and no time for love.
Putting pen to paper, the students gained the power of life and death, and not unlike most creators, their first instinct in creating drama was to destroy. A need for easy calamity compelled them to snap the necks of the universes they fashioned -- like Yahweh charring Gomorrah to cinders in a fit of eschatological pique -- as if there could be no certainty of their power to create until they saw unequivocally their ability to leave things in ruins, twisted metal smoldering on the side of the road.