Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Passing Trains - Chris Hart

Two trains,
Running together
The same way on parallel lines.
I had been so sure we were
Going the same way.

Two trains,
The tracks split, the trains parted.
I was still so sure we would meet
At the station.

Two trains,
With no way to share the track.
I could never figure out
Why she and I
Grew so far apart.

Two trains,
Caught in one another's headlights.
Light can stop you seeing
Just as well as dark.

Two trains,
Passing in the night.
I never told her
I was sorry.

It's hard to write about your own work at the best of times without sounding like a self-congratulatory ass, and even harder when the subject matter is (though abstractly) personal.  Still, let's give it a shot, yeah?  We all have regrets, things we never realized until it was too late, apologies we'd like to say if only we knew how, things left unsaid.  Should they stay unsaid?  Can they ever, really?  I don't know.  This poem is my best shot at communicating those feelings.  Forgive me if I don't provide much in the way of biographical detail here, because this is not about only one thing or person.

I chose a train for the central metaphor here, because I think that's an appropriate way to describe the near tunnel vision we are all subject to at any given time.  Whether we realize it or not, in some way, we are all bodies in motion.  Sometimes we intersect, and hitch our cars together.  Other times, we're just a point of light passing by, often blindingly, even if brief.  We might run parallel for a time, we might meet later in life, we might not.  Nothing but out feelings and expectations turn these into positives or negatives, and they can all be both.

I hope you can relate, reader, and that this poem can provide some sort of emotional relief, if you've ever felt this yourself.

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