The Metro Station

I took the metro yesterday.
The underground one, not the noisy bus
with the yellow wire that says “stop requested”
when you tug on it hoping to get off.
There wasn’t even a hold door button.

I stood there in a station that was
too spacious, clean, and air-conditioned
for a metro station at rush hour.
Grids of Navajo chalk mapped the wall like tiles
as if that somehow represented Studio City.

I thought of the MIT station, where I was last weekend.
The MIT stop is awesome, said my friend.
Colorful, vibrant in my dream.
Black and white pictures like newspaper clippings on grey tiles.
You could almost see them flutter as the old train lumbered on.
one story flew off in its wake.

Cold wind from the mouth of the tunnel
splashes my downturned face as it exhales.
Eyes wide, the blackened steel tracks below,
Trembling. I lower myself between them,
two steps away and never so alone
numb to the wind now
deaf to the screeching and rattling onslaught
of momentum in my perilous direction.
Seeing only the soft echo of headlights on the tunnel walls,
eyes shut tight now.

Then it is over.
The doors blink open,
light spilling through cautiously
I step in and stand among the thin crowd of empty seats,
holding on a little tighter
to those cold metal bars.

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