POEM: Train of Sleep [Day 11 NaPoMo: Free Verse]

waking in a train car
at the rail yard
slouched in the darkness —

but not pure darkness
because the lights are always on at the railyard
and the pale light shines in at strange angles

slapping the window makes your palm hurt,
bruising the bone of your thumb,
but gets you no closer to being free

trying to wedge your fingers between
the rubber ends of the sliding door panels
proves useless

the door doesn’t give way — weakly —
as it does when a running rider
slips a hand in at the last second during rush hour

nothing to do but to try to go back to sleep
but your mind races with what you’ll say
how it’s “a funny story”
or
indignantly, “isn’t someone supposed to check each car?”

of course, they are, and they did,
but the driver, eager to get home,
just peeked through window into that last car
and didn’t see the person huddled
in the backward-facing first row of that last car

mind-racing, and butt feeling the hard seats
you can’t fall asleep,
and you wonder how you ever did

but, eventually, you do

you wake in the train car
still at the railyard
but without the darkness

because a bright light shines in your face
as someone says,
“What are you doing here?”

1 thought on “POEM: Train of Sleep [Day 11 NaPoMo: Free Verse]

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