On the Green Line to Back Bay


The gray atop my head told you
All you needed to know about me.
You offered your seat without knowing
Whether I was good or bad,
Full of resolve or full of regret.
No, only that I was old.

Did the cover atop your head
Tell me all I needed to know?
Did I see a polite young woman
Of a different faith, or something else?
What allowed you to defer such questioning
With an act so good and simple?

Had you somehow learned
(In those long centuries yet unrealized here)
That it is the small gesture,
The simple act without examination,
That makes it possible to live
In this world so full of fear and doubt?

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