Schwinn

I hold the iron rail tightly.

Chains scarring painted skin.

You left me here all winter, dear.

I’m rusted to the core.

 

Don’t try to break me free.

I won’t hold you up for long.

My legs will creak –

You will fall, dear.

I was old ‘fore you were born.

 

Zipped bags say you’re leaving.

Like you always do.

I’ll find a home in pavement, dear.

Don’t cry –

You did this on your own.

 

I said shut up.

No one will care.

They know your type, dear.

Please –

Don’t burden them, too.

 

 

 

We Will Deliver

A bus wanders down the lonely highway, its dirty sides reflecting with the late afternoon sun.  Behind its black-tinted windows are tomorrow’s engineers and doctors, social workers and educators; but one would not think this if they saw them now.  The eyes of these brilliant souls are glassy, their arms stiff and sore.  They are clad in thick coats and wooly socks, mother’s scarves and grandma’s hats.  At this hour, they are children seeking home.

The bus turns from the main road to a path that is far too old to withstand its modern girth.  Still, it squeezes itself onto the gravelly funnel and rolls forth with unbending confidence.  No one else has dared to venture out, today: the ground is covered in a thick blanket of snow, and all else is tucked beneath a sheet of ice.  Nothing moves while the hulking product of will and industry makes its mighty journey.  Its movement in this time-capsule corner of the country evokes from its inhabitants a passive sense of trust.

Even the trains are frozen still, taking shelter beneath sturdy pines and tall maple skeletons.  Their skins are scarred with stripes of precipitation, and their iron hearts are colder than the air itself.  As the bus charges past their mummified faces, they make a silent promise.

We Will Deliver, they say.

Will they?