83 Southbound

Between buckled knees and bodies strung obtuse,
we make our way down the 5 South,
Pacific-bound and bundled together by sore feet
and backpacks, some cross bodied and cross hatched
in the sun spill of half past dawn.
Nodding off brings a stiff ache to the neck,
like rotting rubber, a sinew-stretch cruelest
with the switching of gears. With all passengers
suspended in that low hum, it could trick you
into mistaking mechanical for corporal,
steel steps for tectonic plates,
all transfixed in that mosquito-molasses mirage
of stillness between stratum, rolling off and on
off and on ramps and departing, always departing.
We could forget we are the constant.

By Hanna Andrews