5:53 train ride
Blue, vast, cloudless sky, blushing red with the dawn of dusk. A rickety silver snake curved through the wrinkles lining Mother E’s face. We bypassed her dusty brown bloodlines, gazed blankly at billboards that clogged pores of her skin. Sunk sometimes, inside her misshapen rock rich veins. My Ipod had met her maker an hour ago, abandoning my ride, me in my hour (and a ½ )of need. I could not slip beneath the watery surface of the music’s comfort and distortion. Had to listen to the droning of a man cooing comforts to his wife about his arrival to Wyandanch.
Sunlight’s glare showed windows tinted with dirt, liver spots of age staining the old snake’s cheeks. I was bored, so extremely bored when I saw him. He stood tall on the top of an unmarked brick building. Dusk’s copious powder soaked up his color, reduced him to a pair of pitch black limbs. Left hand on his heart, lone black limbs watched the trains beneath him, feet fingering the edge. Feet so close to the edge, feet off the edge?
My heart stopped. I felt paralyzed. Gone, even before my muscles clenched to stand. Gone! Get up! Why aren’t you getting up? Pointless. You’re mistaken, you miss-saw. And if he was…if he had, you couldn’t have saved him. You were in a moving train far from any discernible station.
The denizens of the 5:53 didn’t stir. I was livid, silently hysterical with my horror. How my teeth craved for the sweet distraction of ear-buds, phones, newspapers. I wanted to taste the sickening meld of wires and plastic as headphones drifted too close to a man’s mouth. Wanted to taste the dry salty chew of a woman deeply devouring her newspaper. Every row had a sweet, every row had a cavity.
So nobody saw him. I shouldn’t have seen him.
I should have missed that living statute who thought, nobody would see.