Tuesday, August 22, 2017

monday's train journal

subway train rumbles on
        doors open, chimes

people hop in, and out-
         scarves, hats, jackets,

turbans, shorts, slippers, shoes-
         a sea of hues-

a woman with black veil- 
         pale girl with tattoos- 

an old man, with dirty cart- 
         lad with headphones-

i trace clouds & blue sky
         against gray steel

i am not colorblind,
         there are shades, tints

beyond my sunglasses, 
         borders to scale

in my mind, fenced by words,
         beliefs and faith-

i check them everyday-
         measuring depth,

levels of acidity-
         i seek relief in green

forest, calm acceptance 
         of mother nature-

i pray for roots of empathy, 
         seeds of kindness

to rain whatever hardness 
         is left inside-

slowly, surely, i work
         chipping corners-

here comes my station stop-
         i fold my edges

under red cardigan- 
         the crowd surges, 

giant waves, blurring our
         faces with sands-

Posted for D'verse Poets pub - Border Poetics.  Challenge:  To write about border theme and include the word "border" either in your title or poem. An extra challenge would be to write about the invisible border theme e.g. mental borders or imaginary boundaries.   The form and structure is your choice.

Please join us when the pub doors open at 3pm EST.  Thanks for the visit.


  1. I really love how you describe the mix in the commuter train... maybe we all need to see that instead of being fenced by glass and steel in private cars.

  2. Reminds me of when I use to take the light rail downtown when I worked. I actually wrote something once regarding it a long time ago now. I love what you have written here. Yes...all of the above. :)

  3. I like the structure and sound of this poem, Grace, which evokes memories of the Tube and various other subway trains I've ridden across Europe in the past. You've captured the hustle and bustle in the list of clothes. I love the way it comes to s stop.

  4. Love the theme here ~ the seeking of relief in nature ~ and beautifully written. I'm sure if we could lock properly into the natural world the pressures we put ourselves under and things we strive for would be put in a proper place! Great work Grace

  5. I loved the sounds in this especially- turbans, shorts, slippers, shoes-
    a sea of hues- how very very lovely.

  6. The "roots of empathy" would be good passports across invisible borders between people.

  7. New title--A POET'S COMMUTE--incredible energy & imagery here, like Mailer was your muse. HBO used to have a series, SUBWAY STORIES, powerful vignettes and mini-dramas; check it out on Netflix.

  8. You have taken me on the train with you Grace. So much wonderful imagery in this. I love "in my mind, fenced by words,
    beliefs and faith- "...and " I fold my edges"....lovely writing as always!

  9. Love your description of looking outward to nature in order to look inward and the glimpses outward to a diverse cross-section of humanity. Very beautifully done piece.

  10. A border made as you go on your commute. Sure take all in, acidity and all.

  11. Beautiful! Brings memories to mind when I took the subway every day many years ago.

  12. Beautiful with powerful images.

  13. How far is Alberta from you? This year we went to Quebec City...next time it may be Alberta.

    1. Hi Ayala! Alberta is on the Eastern Side of Canada, above Montana (USA). We took the plane going there. Yes, I highly recommend a trip to our Banff National park to see the Icefield Parkway and the Canadian Rockies. Thanks!

  14. A trip in trains. (one of imagination)

  15. A skillful picture of those moment outward and inward

  16. "in my mind, fenced by words,
    beliefs and faith-"

    If we all would focus on ourselves - heal within - what a difference it would make for this world.

  17. So many facets of "border" seen here...whether the physical border of the train does, or the cultural/religious/age/etc. Barriers that are real or percieved. Well written!

  18. 'Turbans shorts slippers shoes' says so much... with this and other phrases you manage to bring up a typical crowded subway scene...I like the internal engagement with edges and openness

  19. I really enjoyed this poem, seeking to overcome the 'borders' of our differences. We can all use being anchored by 'roots of empathy' :) I like the red cardigan, too!

  20. Ah, the world needs this.. Beautifully written, Grace. I especially love these:

    i pray for roots of empathy,
    seeds of kindness

  21. We were similarly inspired by the prompt. Nicely done.

  22. So nice -- the people, the need for nature to temper the city crowd, and especially these lines: "i fold my edges / under red cardigan-". Well done!

  23. This seems to me poem about second thoughts, not the ones that come to us first so defined and ordered -- seeing borders everywhere -- but the second which forgives and amends and makes whole again. A train ride into the still part of the heart. Well done.

  24. A commuter train - the microcosm of a melting pot. "Chipping away at borders".....would that all be involved in this, every day of every month of every year, wherever we are :) Amen.


I try my best to reciprocate comments and visits.
I allow anonymous comments if you have difficulty posting them. Thank you & have a good day!!!