On and Off
There you are, talking cities and days
When the train clacks into Chicago’s Union Station
And the animated conversationalists grab their bags,
Hurry aside dark tracks and into the yellow-lit waiting area.
Gone we are.
Watch checking, as the Greyhound driver fights midnight traffic,
Tries to get a full bus to connections that won’t wait.
Running, confused, looking for gates, hoping buses have been delayed.
Scattered panic.
A sweeper, leaning on his push broom, views fretting passengers.
“Relax, there’s always another bus.”
A black-grey uniformed driver, also eyes the harried travelers.
“So if you missed your bus, you’d see the grey dog going away,
getting smaller and smaller.”
After train talk, the willowy architect collects her sketch book,
Gets off and looks up and down the Jackson, Mississippi, station platform.
She moves towards me before I get back on the train.
She hugs me.
I hug her.
“Will you write about me?” she softly asks.
“I don’t know,” I softly reply.

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, early September 2013


Author: Gene Novogrodsky

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, a Brownsville resident for nearly three decades, writes North American border slices, from eastern Canada to central Mexico, and in between. He is one of the founders of the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center Writers Forum in San Benito. He sometimes participates with the informal Resaca Writers Group in Brownsville. He prefers, however, to read to two or three attentive listeners – when asked!


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