Sitting at a stoplight
as I look the other way
mosquito on the dashboard
measuring a summer’s day.

Familiar song on the radio
takes me back to the fray
a memory churns slowly
I find it slips away to grey.

One split second hesitation
speeding car, runaway train
thinking of what might have been
the hours they bring me pain.

Blaring horns, obscenities
mouth opens in silent scream
trembling limbs, aftershocks
living reflection from a dream.

Tears fall in gratitude
a near miss, my heart careens
blood pumps furiously in veins
now a thousand years in between.

We pick ourselves up and carry on
breathing deep, minds serene
counting blessings of each day
as the sun sets in blazing tangerine.

Colleen Keller Breuning © 2021
July 5, 2021

We had a very close call one day last week while driving to Publix in Panama City, Florida.  As we sat first in line at a stoplight, a speeding SUV blatantly hit the gas and ran through a red light. If it were not for my son-in-law’s intuitive split-second hesitation as the light turned green, that SUV would have certainly slammed us broadside and caused a horrendous accident. The thought of that completely shook me afterward, especially since Posie was in the backseat with my husband.

Certain things stick in your mind as you count and re-count happenings and blessings of the day. Now I will probably always think of this moment when Tangerine plays.  But I am grateful that God was watching over us and for some reason, caused Brenton to hesitate at the light. Thank you…. this was one of those reminders that life is truly precious. Please people, be careful and diligent when driving out there. Slow down, and for God’s sake, do not run red lights!!!!!!!!!

One of my favorite Led Zeppelin songs….


  1. I’ve sat and watched them run lights here as if they don’t exist. I’m glad y’all are all okay.

    1. Thank you, my friend! It was surreal, and proof that God was watching over us because how often do we anxiously hit the gas when that light turns green? I know for certain I will give pause each time now….

      I thought of you as we zipped by the Gastonia exits on our way home (I was at the wheel going and returning driving through your area). We drove straight through without stopping for the night, got home at 3:30 am Saturday. ❤ ❤

      1. When one is headed home, home is the only place you want to stop. I’m glad you had a wonderful visit, and that you are home safe and sound. And yes, if we pay attention, we will see Him taking care of us more than we may realize.

  2. Irene Melgoza says:

    Glad you’re all okay. I always look around before hitting that gas pedal when the light turns green. ❤

    1. Thanks sweet Irene! That is definitely a wise thing for you to do. I know I will from now on!!!! ❤

  3. tylermyrth72 says:

    Wow, that would shake me too. Glad it turned out okay

  4. Dia Jae says:

    People can be crazy! I was saved by hesitation a few times!!! Glad you’re safe. Great poem!!!

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