i walked down to the turnstile

and saw two women standing properly

their heels behind the yellow paint.

they looked like they had never been here before.

i smiled and said hello and they chose to do the opposite

and so i looked forward and turn my smile back to

a resting and empty face.

they wore long black coats with golden buckles that didn’t

seem to serve any real utility — but damn if they didn’t look good.

we loaded onto the train, all three of us.

i sat down and they moved towards the map on the inside of the train

and tried to manifest some sort of sense out of the colors on the creme.

when they could not figure it out i asked if they needed any help

and they looked back at me as though i had offered to skin myself for them.

i decided to decide that they were drunk.

i put on my headphones, chose to not make any sense of any of this.

i hugged my bag against my body, put my head down and hummed along.

i don’t know who those women were. or where they came from. or where they were going. all i know is that

they thought my music was louder than it really was.


a side eye glance.

‘$10 bucks there’s a bomb in there’

some laughter.

‘fucking terrorist’

some more laughter.

my father, my father!

the father of an alleged 2 a.m. L train backpack bomber

taught me that most fights aren’t worth fighting.

but he never said anything about having a little bit of fun.

and so i began under my breath, asking god to give these women some peace and prosperity.

the language i chose to use comes from where the terrorists do.

they turned to porcelain, and i could hear every beat of the track

a stop later

they stumbled off the train.