down the road
you want people to start riding the bus
taking the train
it is late Sunday afternoon
i am trying to get home after a day downtown
i ride the train to my connection
have my headphones on
trying to picture myself home already
as the train pulls into the station
i see the 33rd bus is THERE!
omg, i have to hurry
i know that they only run every hour
i miss the bus
and it means an hour wait
in the sun … no shade for the benches
a man accosts me
as i try to tap off before rushing over the tracks
apparently he followed me off the train
like a hound
like a dog
like he thought i was rushing to run
from a hound
a dog … he might have called for me to stop
i did not hear — must have whispered
this man accosts me while i’m tapping my card
he SEES me tap my card
it is a train-ticket person
suppose to make you feel secure
he held me up
i stood there crying ….. sobbing!
saying PLEASE! my bus …. it is there …. i will miss the bus!
he stood smug
kept running my card on his machine
saying it wasn’t working
for some reason
i say let me tap it again
then maybe it will work
he says no
they will charge you again
which it would NOT
is this even a real worker?
he doesn’t know that it goes by TIME
not how many times you tap?
dogged me off the train
in his mind a catch? i don’t know
i had tapped on, downtown
the MAN finally lets me go
at HIS pleasure
he still can’t get a read on my card
but finally asks
the bus is RIGHT there
you would have to be daft to miss it!
as a snot: “have a nice day”
no courtesy ….
i rush to my bus all the harder
i made the trip to town after church
was in a dress
my best jewelry
and to be accosted like that
until i was crying …
i yelled over my shoulder
“i hope YOU have a lousy day!”
i saw him talking with another MAN
happy in whatever plot
to bother one lone woman
on a train …..
i was repairing my mind
spending the day looking UP
at the skyscrapers
and your MAN destroyed my healing
i cannot redress the loss
except to say …………
really? this is how you intend
to get more cars off the road? really?
who wants to ride a train at this rate?
where a woman traveling alone
is made to feel set upon ….
if i was carrying a backpack
if i was in jeans
or had tattoos ….?
in a DRESS
a small purse
my back brace
i found myself waving my arms
while complaining to the bus driver
like a mad Italian!
the bus driver smiled and agreed, crazy!
a passenger leaned forward
said …. “yep, they just work to harass you.”
i do not understand
do you want people taking mass transit or not?
seriously …. or is it just for show
i am angry AGAIN
just in writing this!
to be accosted … a lone woman
trying to get HOME
against my will
until i am sobbing
“let me catch my bus! it is right THERE!
crying …tears and tears …. “you will make me miss my bus!”
smiled at my distress