augury doggerel

Sunday, July 20, 2003


A well-muscled man stands at the front of the tram, his back to us all. A baby girl in his right arm looks over his shoulder. A bag of groceries hangs in the other hand. The girl watches air and smiles. Her father shifts from one leg to the other, flexes his arm to bring her closer, and kisses the top of her bobbling head.

Turn now and look at the women across the aisle. David Attenborough crawls between their ankles unnoticed. They are vibrating and will soon flower or burst. They will crouch in the aisle and release a low, mournful thrumming noise from their throats. They will beat the tram floor and wail and begin a circling dance of umbrellas and handbags.

But here's my stop.


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