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Public Transportation

"I would have missed the young man trying to get on at Christie, beating the door with both fists"

Published onMay 12, 2024
Public Transportation

Photo by VH S;

If I took the car I would have missed
the woman offering her seat
and her insistence to sitplease sit
I would have missed
the memories of her mother who
owns a bean farm in Jamaica
she will inherit one day.
And then what? Leave Toronto?
I would have missed the man
who gets on at Vaughn,
asks the driver something,
who nods then puts the bus in gear.
He screeches! Wails! Bolts for the stroller
he left outside pizza pizza.
I would have missed the young man
trying to get on at Christie,
beating the doors with both fists.
He bellows as the driver ignores him.
He actually shakes the bus,
punches the doors so hard
I expect glass to shatter.
Some version of myself might ask
What would Jesus do?
But that version stays in his seat.
The bus lurches forward
leaving the young man behind
until I no longer see him –
or hear him – and only then
do I scan the faces of fellow travelers,
looking for something –
hoping my relief is unanimous.

Bill Garvey's poetry has been published in several journals across North America. His poetry collection, The basement on Biella, was published in 2023 by DarkWinter Press. He grew up in Springfield, Massachusetts and currently lives in Canada with his wife, Jean. He enjoys the public transportation of Toronto. 

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