A dream

One day while on a cross-country trip
I took a wrong turn down an old country road
The car started to overheat so I got out and started to walk
A few miles and a lot of thoughts later
I came across an old rundown gas station
You know the type
A self serve gas station
Convenience store inside that sold all of the lucky strikes you need
Hubcap connected to a key for the bathroom type of place
The kind you see in the movies but never see in real life
Outside of the station, sitting on a milk crate was an old man
He asked me if I have lost my way
I said no
My car is broken down up the road a bit and I need some assistance
He showed me a toothless grin and asked again
Have you lost your way?
Feeling dumbfounded over the repetitious question
I asked the old man if he has been drinking or has the heat gotten to him
He said
No. I haven’t drank in my whole life
and this aint heat its perseverance
An evolved state of perspiration
Handed down by generations
and besides, the heat has brought you to me
I asked the old man
Who are you?
He replied
I am you
Now things started to feel weird
How can you be me?
When I am right here talking to you
The old man shifted on his makeshift seat
As if he was going to say something heavy
As if he was going to lay the world on me
He said come closer
So I did
He said put out your hands
I did
He placed a piece of paper in my open palms
I flipped it over to reveal a photograph
It was a photograph of myself as a baby
As I stared at it more
It changed to a picture of myself in my adolescence
Then me as a young man
Then a picture of myself in my late forties
Then it went into its final transformation
An exact image of the man in front of me
Bearing the recognizable lines of my lineage
Around the eyes and mouth
A hint of Portugal
Mixed with the south
I was captivated by the photo
Taken aback to say the least
I glanced up from my thoughts
And the old man was gone
As was the gas station
Just tumble weeds and dust all around
I felt faint
Started to walk
But I stumbled to the ground
The sheer madness of it all
I just wanted to see the country
In my own time
Live as a pioneer
Like our forefathers
My life just flashed before my eyes