Wednesday, July 7, 2021

The Woman on the Subway

Surely the saucy little number
with short brunette hair
was looking at me every few seconds
as passengers jostled when the train braked.

She stared at me—yes, she did—
and then the lights went out
for a nanosecond as the car
lurched to another track, a minor course correction,

and electrons jumped into the railway circuits
and the young woman’s brain
and then mine, filled with images
of kissing her in a dark leather booth over lunch.

She smiled ever so slightly.
Oh my goodness, she must have
unless I am mad as a loon on a winter lake,
hoping for a mate while the snow thickens the air.

Her lips formed “Call me” before she turned away,
but not before dropping her card, which I retrieved
while groping past commuters who’d never tasted love.
She was Brenda, an account manager,

but the card was torn
in a line of jagged white feathers.
Was she Brenda Smith or Jones or Totenburg?
Did she work for a conglomerate

or a florist on a side street,
her body sitting in a back room dwarfed by gray giants,
monoliths in the center of Manhattan?
Her lips were red and her eyes were blue,

and now I will not know what to call our children
or what schools they shall attend.
Who will I kiss on New Year’s Eve
since the old calendar has taken away my chance for love?

~William Hammett

Site Map

No comments:

Post a Comment