This cosmic canister carries the world’s disarray-
Our destinations different, our feelings the same.
Though we have regular meetings we remain strangers;
Heads down, uncomfortable.
A pattern forms in our lives which none exits, our sacred routine which if changed is wrong.
Empathetic eyes glazed with weariness.
At each departure, a new inhalation of caffeine and smoke,
A new wave of bodies,
A new mass.
We all contribute to the mass, but the mass never goes,
Only waxes and wanes with the seasons.
We travel as one, carried by destinations, riddled with enigmas.
The hour reaches 6:00 and the mass bulges; the kettle is at its boiling point.
We move as agitated atoms riling against one another.
The world’s day draws to a close, as our microenvironment wakes.
A man exhales stale disappointment- no promotion due.
The coarse skin of his fingers caresses
The constant happiness in his life;
Helping him live, hastening his death.
Unable to inhale satisfaction, his suit clad leg
Writhes underneath the table,
Distracting him, but alerting others of the craving.
Although his tie is straight and his briefcase orderly,
A lose thread and weary eyes give him away-
He’s tired; tired of life, tired of the necessary endless routine
Which holds him and his livelihood captive.
It weakens and sustains him simultaneously.
His secrets define him.
A girl sighs, her cheeks wet,
Tears heavy with hurt.
A bruise has settled itself on her forearm;
A warning for the next time she comes home late.
Her skin has become a canvas and everyday more paint is added.
Her permanent ink hides the painful marks
Yet the latter seems to leave the most lasting impression.
Her face is scarcely discernible;
Metal studs line the place where her smile should be-
They are so many that her humanity becomes robotic.
Her secrets define her.
The tube we sit in holds heavy hearts, new smiles,
The mass becomes one as each day our routine returns,
We get to know our fellow travellers
Without really getting to know them at all.
Their influence on our existence seems insignificant,
Yet they contribute to the steadfast mass that so grips our little lives,
Whilst we hold on to sanity by a single thread.
Our secrets define us.