In days threatened by disease and war the still quiet
of ordinary boredom might seem desirable.
………………………………………………. —Roshi Bob
The all-seats-filled Thursday 3:26
from Boston to New York speeds along
the same familiar route
through tiny Connecticut towns
whose pulse beats only in the narrow corridor
between tracks and docks:
Mystic, New London, Old Saybrook.
They are the kind of New England fishing town
one would imagine from a Longfellow poem,
half-hidden under coastal mist,
where the moisture in the air
creates halos around neon signs on the row of stores
that provide the communities essentials.
—Nails, Pizza, Karate—
where the driftwood that knocks at the hull of moored boats,
the smell of the sea’s salty brine
and the metallic twang of wires
slapping the mast of rocking sailboats
are lost to the traveler
behind the thick-paned windows of the train,
where the steady tedium of clanking rail
is broken only by the sight of the lone seagull
whose ghostly silhouette
glides against the descending dusk.
by Sassan Tabatabai
The Pen & Anvil Press, 2011