prophecies on the subway walls
i live on dirty subway corners where you can hear the resonant
afterthought of a musican's heartbeat.
(and orpheus reaches out.)
and my breath is the passing thrum of the
metro, because my home
is not heaven nor hades so perhaps in between.
rest your feet, traveler, toss me a coin or two.
i can spin you a tale or sing you a song, like
the poets before me. i construct
ballads out of discolored chewing gum wads and the
stink of cigarette smoke and it might not be
pretty, wanderer, but it is home.
(and home is not where gods live but
where humans die.)
bend down, little one, sit if you wish.
(the metro won't arrive 'til the show is complete.)
what has brought you to me? a melody? a legend? perchance, a wish?
maybe a dream, these days they say
dreams are wishes in wolves' clothing.
humans say many things nowadays. but some things are constant.
you know, they sing how 'the words of the prophets
are written on the subway walls.'
i think it's a funny little saying, funnier still
how we choose to ignore them.
cassandra would have hated that no one learned.
(or maybe she'd laugh, and have another glass. pessimism is
fashionable on those fate favors, on those fate twists.)
but troy's been in the same cycle for a millennium now.
different names, same games. history repeats- in fact, it rhymes,
and perhaps this verse will be mine to spin.
ah, the time approaches. and so for a bow. a finale, an ending. how will the curtain
close? a metro station is not for these things, you see. i am
not a beginning or an ending- i am a transition, like all important things.
perhaps you'll learn to value transitions one day- these walls are not
sleek marble, not polished wood. they are dirty, a half note of an unfinished song,
abandoned. traveler, learn to listen, learn to see. and when you leave, hear the
hum of the subway, read the prophecies on the walls.
and maybe this time, when cassandra speaks, someone will listen.