Train was held up because
it hit someone on the tracks.
Turns out the guy was drunk,
mistook the steel rail
for the soft mattress of his bed.
The locomotive severed a limb,
crushed his skull,
while we passengers
complained about how we
weren't being told a damn thing.
I read all that in the paper
the next day.
I felt bad for the guy,
had to retrace my life
back to those two hours
of frustration in that train car,
and replace annoyance with sorrow,
cusses with care.
Luckily, it's a route I've taken many times.
Like relating skimpy Christmas presents
to an old man out of work,
or tracking a lost love to a missed opportunity.
So many moments
don't get their information
immediately from the source.
Facts show up later.
Not apologetic.
Just truthful.
Last night,
on my commute home from work,
my annoyance thought it hit someone.
Turns out my regret was responsible.
John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in Examined Life Journal, Studio One and Columbia Review with work upcoming in Leading Edge, Poetry East and Midwest Quarterly.