“Amen” in paradise.
What quality of bird? A fleeting
hard-to-catch. On thrifted wings
the author fails and fails and
letters part her dovecote pockets,
touching down. She lands.
A woman yells. The man across
the train says “oh” and catches up
his papers. Chinatown’s the stop.
Three “dings” (the last “ding”
shutters him from slip-back-in).
Remaining passengers unstill,
resettle, seats apposing us,
the bare reflections. Billboards
caption these unwitting portraits,
alphabet in posture not in speech.
Next stop: Forest Hills. The end-
of line. Tomorrow’s inbound
origin: a clock and tunnel.
Milling edge. Eliding pigeons.
Copyright © 2001 Meghan Hickey. All Rights Reserved.
Source: Harvard Review (Number 21, Fall 2001)