Because When you first got handed your keys, your mom in the driver’s seat, She held onto the handle every time you went 26 instead of 25. Because She said, “Don’t get distracted fumbling with the radio,” And you rolled your eyes. Because In health class, when they taught you about distracted driving, You thought, “Who would do that?” Because They showed videos of car accidents in Drivers Ed, And you said, “That’ll never happen to me.” Because When you got your permit, Your smile was as wide as the front fender of the car you got to drive home. Because The year you had to wait for your license Felt like decades. Because The first time you drove by yourself, You were so cautious you drove 15 in a 25. Because When you were 15, your cousin got into a car accident, And you never forgot to buckle up again. Because Your friends like the music So loud you can’t hear the other cars pass you. Because You were in the car when your mom hit a deer Changing the song on her iPod. Because Why should you have to wait To eat, when you multitask so well? Because That song came on the radio, And you couldn’t help dancing. Because You watch your friends bury their faces in their phones While you’re in the passenger seat. Because It’s just One text. Because It’s just Loud music. Because You never thought It would be you. Because Your mom always said, “It’s not you I’m worried about, It’s the other people on the road, too.” Because To someone else’s mom, You are one of the other people on the road. Because You Matter. Because You don’t want to Be a statistic. Because It can Wait. Because It should Wait. Because The first day you took the keys, You made a promise. Keep it.
This poem is a description of all the different ways teenagers are tempted while driving, as well as all the different ways reckless driving and car accidents affect people’s lives. The poem’s ending is meant to persuade the audience the keep the promise we all make every time we get behind the wheel, and to remember the list of reasons we must drive safe and undistracted.