The last train

What would you do, if your world was about to end? Denying it? Or waiting for it? So, dark like November here is a poem that I built out of a short story I wrote many years ago. Old as it is, it’s still uncanny.

sitting on the dusty floor
of a subterranean station corner
pale-faced people pass me murmuring
words that sound like spells or prayers
concerning a kind of supernormal
unknown world power

I wonder what I’m doing here
perhaps I’m just a hanger-on hanging on
fled from above like all the others
like spilt milk from a broken mug
streamed out to leave behind for good
this cursed country

maybe some of them former leaders
lost themselves down here as well,
waiting for the last train leaving
leaving the city, leaving home
overcoming crisis in places far off
Caribbean sunshine domains

a last denier buys the news of the day:
after a crisis, there will be improvement
so don’t despair and work on harder!
walking on calmly he has his read
while searching for some place to sit
and have a cup of coffee

there’s an old lady selling flowers
and talking about her trip to heaven
she took in an earlier part of her life
now knowing something, maybe about
a forthcoming evil, a bitter insight
concerning each of them

yes, there’s something about to blow
out any of their faint, grey lives
though, still they cling to it so hard
struggling, dying to escape
unable to face this weird situation
but have they really lived?

a young girl’s rushing through a cloud
of rising dust and frightened people.
an innocent one, a disillusioned one
someone who’s never experienced
anything extraordinary
in none of her lives

there are no children around this place
just small adults, staring innocently
along the never-ending tubes
which train would dare to merge into
this world underground?
a giant snake or dragon

questioneyes from the junky couple
breathing shells in the corner next to mine
are fixed on two dark tunnel holes
there’s no care for anything anymore,
apart from having a nice shiny needle
praised source of indifference

the streets above are empty with people
inhabiting only the frozen shadows
of souls who decided to hide from the world
and its dark forebodings
crept to bunkers and panic rooms
but what is safety?

down here it’s just about to be stirred
since everybody’s hearing now
through old distorted subway woofers
the message no one wanted to hear
from a radio voice far, far away
the war has started

first attack on the capital city
still looking for survivors
but did they know the war has started
already a long time ago
grew up with them to accompany them
all along on their ways

paranoid glimpses flicker around
pushing on the platform, looking
at each other with panic faces,
forgetting about yesterday’s personal battles
escapists still fighting, yet not escaping
are waiting for their fate

strangers standing side by side
hugging each other in despair, united in fear
then whirring sounds and flashing rails
announce the supernormal world power
that’s finally up to save its clients
the last train is coming

C. Holister (c) 2017 all rights reserved

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