“Dear Morning Commuters” by Tina Schumann

Tina Schumann


How is it that you and I are alive 
in the world together? 
Same planet, same time, same day. Why 
that same slant of sunlight
over the deli and dry cleaners, the #49 Express 
traveling its same reliable route?
That mechanized leviathan; laborious, steel-heavy,
a belly full of stupor
      and abandoned dreams.
Every morning it snakes 
its articulated carriage up 10th Avenue
to Broadway, left on Boren and locals further south. 
Even through the downpour, the untouchable sky
and the cars negotiating a small river
of rain, I see the distance 
      we must go. 
The clean white shirt of it; our daily habits
that make a life, a confluence 
    of routine and resolution. 
Thank you for your dedication, your steadfast 
reliability; guy with gray cap and earbuds, 
woman with brown-eyed child 
and battered briefcase. 
Your bravery
proceeds you. 
I could not do it without you.

from Rattle #68, Summer 2020


Tina Schumann: “I love poetry as it never fails to tell me that I am alive and not simply existing. It makes me appear vivid to myself.” (web)

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