Tuesday, June 11, 2024

mind the gap

i step into the subway train

as the wheels grind & groan

the comfort of routine descend

from passing buildings & trees

my thoughts wander

wayward as dandelion fluffs

over the skyway of cars

over bridges of street art & protests 

this space is unbothered by time

this dark tunnel is a fog of poems

this window overlooks gravity

& spots a majestic bird of prey flying

carrying me

over faceless passengers glued to screens 

& hurried texts & to-do-lists-

how far do I go?

what unknown stops await me?

my eyes rest on the valley of blue

where the lake calms & cajoles

a murmuration of birds 

until a whistle breaks

rudely intrudes my train of thoughts

my subway stop is here,

my seat is cold metal & plastic

my backpack weighs a ton

mind the gap (subway sign)

footsteps & faces crowd in

the city, whose clock hurries by

                                        Rick Amor (Australian) “The Agent,” 2019 Oil on canvas 81 x 117 cm

Posted for dVerse Poets Pub - Poetry in Liminal Spaces, hosted by Dora.  Thanks for the visits and comments.


  1. this thought space in a crowded train so visual Grace and I love all the 'mys' at the end leading into mind but these two lines struck such a chord:

    "this space is unbothered by time
    this dark tunnel is a fog of poems"

  2. I love the play on words in your title, "mind the gap," because your mind frees itself in "the gap" of the subway journey and defies time, "dark tunnel," even gravity to waft with the dandelion seeds and the birds of the air. Marvelous gap, marvelous poem, Grace.

  3. I can really feel the space being trapped in that train... and very much the same here, when I go into town more regularly...

  4. i feel a lot like this every time time i use the London tube.

  5. The liminal is the personal subway on the subway route, reverie riding hidden under and inside the rails it persists until reality intrudes with a screech of this-world brakes. Love it ...

  6. "this dark tunnel is a fog of poems"
    Awesome phrase


  7. I love the interplay of nature and manmade in your poem!

  8. These lines stood out to me:
    "this space is unbothered by time
    this dark tunnel is a fog of poems
    this window overlooks gravity"

    It's the way I often feel on a train (or even a car, if I'm not driving).

  9. It has been a long time since I have ridden on the trains in the city but I always found the ride not unlike this...where I would be taken out of myself. I really liked the following lines
    this space is unbothered by time

    this dark tunnel is a fog of poems

    I think I'd find a fog poems on that ride.

  10. The imagery is gorgeous and serene to me all the way until the whistle that marks your stop. And then you’re warned to watch the gap when you’re about to step into a hurried place where the clock runs nonstop in the city. Lovely Grace. I like this. Thanks. Please watch the gaps, indeed. Selma Martin

  11. Despite the insistence of the train imagery and experience, Grace you have taken me to the blue valley "where the lake calms & cajoles/ a murmuration of birds ", and I am grateful xxx

  12. A very nice train of thoughts, Grace. Lost in that liminal space of traveling home at the end of a hard day. Well done.

  13. Really love the visual contrasts between mind/reality and overground/underground in this one! Having ridden the NYC subway yesterday for the first time in years, I found it thrilling to let my mind wander the way you let yours.

  14. I remember the recorded messages at every stop..."Mind the gap". Gently but firmly and respectfully. And mind it we did!!

  15. Train journeys in general are places where time stops, and that in itself can be unsettling, a place where only thoughts chug in relentlessly.

  16. I love 'mind the gap'. It reminds me of fun trips to London. A super poem, Laura.

  17. I really like the imagery of "fog of poems." It's so nice to have those escapes of the mind to get us through the cold and dark!


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