We can follow the tracks north,
as we cross the plains
at 2 am,
we’ll see lightening
for so many miles
it will remind us of daylight.
But we will keep going.
“It’s ludicrous,”
you’ll say
as you look into my eyes
across the dining cart
eating tomato soup and
I’ll have wine.
This is the furthest east
we’ll have ever been,
still, I won’t be able to hold back a laugh
as some passengers claim
they will never leave home again.
They board with lips downturned
and a shallow pool in their eyes.
We won’t know what happened to them,
but we’ll wonder.
And then I’ll feel mean,
sorry, that I laughed.
The train will keep going.
The woman from Arkansas,
grey, with paper skin and bending at the waist will bend your ear just as far
if you can’t sleep,
because neither can she
the wheels will roll over a man
who couldn’t get off the tracks
and we’ll send a postcard
to your best friend.
“We hit a man and squashed him
dead like a bug,”
it’ll say by way of closing.
The front of the card shows
many men’s butts,
bare to the wind,
heads buried in the sand.
He’ll think of this forever,
your best friend, someday sitting on a train
just like this one.

After the sun comes up,
we’ll pass through
The sun will rise several more times before
we see Nantucket.
Close to the top of the world,
you’ll take my hand and say
that the frost
(sparkling over the sea shore
and the trees, branching
delicate hands across our
coach class windows)
is turning you on.