From the archives – Bus Station

(Note: I rode a lot of buses in my teenage years. Up and down. Back and forth. And on those bus trips, lonely and bored more than anything else, I began writing poetry. Here is one of those efforts from the archives. End note.)

Bus Station

Newspapers and M&M’s
Coca-cola and a cigarette
Happiness/sadness
In its purest state –

A devil sitting there
Emotionless, expressionless,
Temporarily permanent

“We remind you that federal regulations permit . . . ”
prostitution . . .
poverty . . .
ignorance . . .
drug addiction . . .
and every conceivable form of immorality . . . . and
“ . . . cigarette smoking only in the rear of the bus . . . . ”
where black people are still forced to sit,
“ . . . in seats clearly marked
for convenience.”

…now loading at Gate 3…
your schedule for:
Danville…
Lynchburg…
Charlottesville…
Washington…
Freedom?

Dear Mr/Mrs Paternalistic White/Black Supremacist,
how many men/women have you destroyed today
with your lustful liberality
with your calloused conceited charm
with your sinister southern smile,
how many of my people have you destroyed today?

How many have you paralyzed:
from the waist down?
from the neck up?
on either side?
How many have you paralyzed?
Did you reach your quota today?

1974

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