As You Sleep
Her sleeve fell from her shoulder of her
pink pajamas as she hugged a pillow.
Seat #34. – his mouth is wide open, snores –
hesitates – snores again – and pink catches my eye –
The two in front of seat #34 lean right, lean left, and right
to join, touch shoulders, while strange voices sing in
their own personal space – tossing in their sleep.
The train finally stops, bodies once sleeping jerk forward as
a conductor shouts, “Baltimore.” You adjust your clothes – and
ask, “Is my pink blouse is centered?” Your metal chair slams
against seat #67 – I glanced to see if anyone was sitting there – I knew
I would here them complain.
Doors close and wheels move, a whistle sounds, and Baltimore disappears.
To our east a sun is rising like a circle of orange marmalade – cities come
alive, winter no longer hides the leaves on a tree – still a scattering of
For a minute I shut my eyes and pictured you dancing, kicking your heels, slapping
your hands against someone’s back – and your smile electrified night –
I never thought I would be here – guarding you from others – protecting your
chair, and watching you sleep.