Someone on the train gets up
and goes over to the intercom
to question why we’re standing by
and amazing miracle he actually
gets an answer that there’s a disabled
train downtown that has cars waiting
at every station and this poor soul
this innocent voice of inconvenient
query that keeps asking why this keeps
happening so finally exasperated I tell him
they spent the money for the train cars
on tunnels and bridges for the car cars
and put all the debt on the old MBTA
so we’re riding on worn out rolling stock
controlled by an aging switching system
and again actually the money they spent
on those tunnels was not even getting
people faster thru tunnels to the airport
but again actually to rewire the financial
district so Boston could be a 21st century
city in global gilded age of mass extinction.


James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s. He is a member of Cosmic Spelunker Theater and has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992. Van Looy leads the Labyrinth Creative Movement Workshop, which his Labyrinth titled poems are based on. His work appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.