Waiting On A Train

I take the long way home after another work day, to find a lengthy freight train has stopped in my way.  No other traffic is there to be found, I had room enough to easily turn around but I pulled up close to where it sat, silent and motionless on the rusty track.  I killed the motor and with the windows down, listened for some telling sound.  A clink a scrape a hiss from a brake.  Any indication it might be readying for escape.  I look to the left no sign of the end, and to the right well beyond the horizon the cars extend.  It’s the afternoon freight I think to myself so certainly it is headed south.  Then comes a long labored steel-on-steel wheeze as the rails moan like wind-bowed trees.  Looks like I was wrong, directionally speaking, as to the north it lurches with bangs and great squeaking.  And then a brake steams and it stops once again, changes direction and accelerates then.  With a whiff of axle grease it now rolls with ease and I watch graffiti covered cargo boxes fly by with a breeze.  Is it hams or HDTVs inside those spray-painted boxes?  Microwaves, Levi’s, briefs or boxers?   Who are Eastside Foxxy and BubbaBGR8?”   In what rail-yard did those artistic scrawls originate?  I am in no hurry no place to go and I sit and stare and wonder as the rumble starts to fade away, and still I am in mesmerized oblivion when up comes the crossing gate, and the horns of the drivers behind me start wailing away.

 

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