J.W. Burleson photo / Boquillas del Carmen, Coah.


My photo
Brooklin, Maine, United States
We own a 1975 GMC Sierra Grande 15 in Maine and a 1986 Chevrolet Custom Deluxe 10 in West Texas. Also a pair of 1997 Volvo 850 wagons. Average age in the fleet is 28 years--we're recycling. I've published 3 novels: THE LAW OF DREAMS (2006), THE O'BRIENS (2012), and CARRY ME (2016). Also 2 short story collections: NIGHT DRIVING(1987) and TRAVELLING LIGHT (2013). More of my literary life is at www.peterbehrens.org I was a Fellow at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study for 2012-13. I'm an adjunct professor at Colorado College and in the MFA program at Queens University of Charlotte. In 2015-16 I was a Fellow at Harvard University's Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. The Autoliterate office is in Car Talk Plaza in Harvard Square, 2 floors above Dewey Cheatem & Howe. SUBSCRIBE TO THE AUTOLITERATE DAILY EMAIL by hitting the button to the right.

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

1984 Toyota Chassis Cab Wheelbarrow

Jonathan Walsh caught the truck in NJ, and expanded our idea of what a wheelbarrow truck can be. "A lot can happen to a truck in nearly 40 years, including numerous custom mods. This appears to be an original chassis cab, which Toyota turned out through the 1980s, often for camper conversions. This stake bed, spotted in Berkeley Heights, N.J., looks like a 1984 model. "

Monday, March 20, 2023

Cherry-Red MG

A Cherry-Red MG Roadster on Palmerston Sq, July, 2020

In the weeks after Savannah died,

I would see things 

in their new, unholy

light, stripped, as you do —


here’s one, Palmerston Square

in the magic excrescence 

the snow globe of glow that remains

of a sunless July evening,

I take the alley shortcut,

its mercenary efficiency

carving through the flanks of prim 

brick, northwest toward Bathurst.


All the old nameless alleyways

have signposts now

like department stores.

As with affairs, being named

they end soon after.


In the weeks after someone dies,

you think about them all the time

in the act of not thinking about them:

I’m not going to think about it, I think,

sharply intaking the filigree light, a scalpel —

it isn’t true, I think, clocking the 

cherry-red MG, casually resplendent, in the drive —

I’m not thinking about her —

young girl practising flute in the window — 

her then-ness or or her not-ness,

jangle of hoops, tattoos and dotted cotton,

a shed snakeskin 

her summer dress unmoored.


The young girl mouths her flute,

the notes wet the evening air.


Down the street, the knife-sharpener’s bell 

warbles, nearing. 


                                                            -Eva H.D.

AL: Note that our cherry-red MG roadster was parked in front of Friend Memorial Library, Brooklin, Maine. Photo by Henry Behrens

Sunday, March 19, 2023

1999 Volvo V70, Cambridge.

These early edition V70s were basically the 850 with a facelift. Solid cars. Ford turned the 2001 V70 variants into problem children, notably with expensive  transmission problems.

AL posts photos & field notes from our contributors. We appreciate your take on interesting cars, trucks, landscapes, highways, automobile culture. Try us at autoliterate@gmail.com

Saturday, March 18, 2023

1956 Ford Fairlane. California

From Michael Moore in Northern Cal: "Down by the water somebody had parked this mildly custom but notably original ’57 Fairlane I liked quite a lot; the lustre is off the paint and looks to have had a little restoration done on the roof but otherwise pretty straight, eh?  Said “Fordomatic” on the decklid...but the shifter on the floor might belie that."

Friday, March 17, 2023

The Law of Dreams

 My son looked up from reading the other day and said, "This is my favorite book." You can find it on Amazon, of course.

Randy Nonnenberg, Bring a Trailer, and a 1986 Chevrolet K-10


From Ben Cohen's piece in WSJ on Randy Nonnenberg's Bring a Trailer. 
"...To breed trust in an industry not exactly known for it, BaT listings are vetted by the company’s employees before they are published. Each write-up comes loaded with verified information: essential details about the car, plenty of photos and the auction records of that make and model, including the ones that fell short of a reserve price. Instead of flowery language, there are basic facts. Rather than disappearing immediately, the cars, bids and comments live forever. The increased transparency is the equivalent of people documenting their entire dating histories on their Tinder profiles.

"It’s a business formula based on Mr. Nonnenberg’s own experience as a consumer. He didn’t trust anyone selling cars—and he especially didn’t trust anyone selling cars online. “A lot of things are claimed on the internet, and that does not mean they’re true,” he said. They weren’t permanent, either. It always bothered him when listings were scrubbed, as if they never existed, and he was right to assume that others felt the same way...."

We like this 998-Mile 1986 Chevrolet K-10 now on the block at BaT.

Thursday, March 16, 2023

VW Type 2 Survivor


Michael Moore caught the bus in the Bay Area. He came upon a restored Type 2 in Colorado a while back.