Part 33

But the things that happened
turned life into a second class
waiting room in a grubby train station
in some small town, somewhere
between here and there, a name
you would hear only if there has been
a blockade or an accident.

Waiting is a fool’s errand. Waiting is
not hope, do not give hell a sweet
sobriquet. You don’t wait because
you think you have a chance, you wait
because there is no other way. There is
no train to come, there is no place
you want to go. Just this seedy
room on a nowhere platform with
a yellow light bulb separating
you from insanity.

Mice scurry in the dark. A lost gust
of wind sometimes wakes the
dust. An empty Pepsi bottle rolls between
benches. Life goes on while you wait.
The stretch of universe you hold tight
between your fingers, starts to slip. You
think the rumble of thunder is an
incoming train. You think you imagined
the rain. You wake up in your own
bed, wet and shivering, still waiting,
a bottle of pepsi, warm and flat,
sitting on your table.

In a train station, a yellow light
bulb flickers.


17 thoughts on “Part 33

  1. This was interesting, I can relate to a lot of it. I was born in a farmhouse seven miles outside a small town in Nebraska in the Missouri River basin, population about 250. While I was still home they took out the train service, pulled the tracks and the station rot. Some places make a small museum of them.
    When I was in the Army coming home from my parents’ home and my generator, they hadn’t invented alternators back then yet, because of metal stress broke the mount. It was past midnight and we would coast downhill, some call them New Mexico Mountains, and turn the engine on going up. Finally we came to a small town, it was all locked up but the lights were on at the train station.
    Since we had babies, twins in bassinets, we decided to stay, on invitation, at the station until morning when we could get the car fixed. While I was in the U.S. Army we had to pull guard duty at a remote missile site in the desert. There were about five or six a little less than a mile apart from another one. We could sleep in the little shack for office and guard staying. Several times I would see rats crawling on the boards making up the wall (Studs and braces). I would always sleep with the lights on but the generators wouldn’t run all night. When the lights went out I went out and refilled the generators with fuel. No darkness sleeping for me.
    Too much, sorry. But I do enjoy reading your ongoing story and it seems to always remind me of my past.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fascinating Jim.. am so glad memories are triggering memories!! Pop 250 just kills me.. I live in a city of 10 million.. my building has more people than that! A shack in the middle of nowhere with rats!!! Ha ha!! I once stayed in a tree-house type thing on the Cauvery river bank and we had to keep all our stuff in iron chests at night so the rats wouldn’t get them…creepy as hell! 🙂


  2. The second verse is outstanding. Not only can I see that seedy train station so clearly, the anger is thick enough to feel, especially in the line about hope, or the lack of it.


  3. I felt every line of this, as I pictured it. The details are brilliant….that rolling Pepsi bottle, that yellow light. Wonderfully written.


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