Unmentionable on the M train, hoarding others’ stories. Orange, orthopedic, allegory for needing it the next time around. Quick rally on the train tracks, some rats
look straight back at me. Ready for the reason to squeeze beyond bent doors broken last year by a man four times my size, like my enzymes in radical decline
this time I see condiments hidden beneath the chair opposite from me. Fragments of a napkin, no winning, no rest for the mother with the stroller & two kids
damned, rushing, my gushed gallbladder going gastric & hardstripped, money went down the other way, gapping the silence like all the city ever wanted was
a soda and a straw in the express line or debit, no sack or smack on the half-loved sweet side of hell.
Ella Bartlett is an Iowan-born, New-York-educated, and Paris-based writer. This poem was inspired by the unforgettable character of the NYC transport system. You can follow her on Twitter @EllaTheRewriter