Dogs 2007

NAP IN TRANSIT
(2/28/07)


on arrival
to the island
we received
Welcome Aboard
packages
all standard fare
specific rules
and regs
of the training
facility
tourist info
about the area
then
on a separate
bright colored flier
a two dozen bulleted
list of

PLACES AND SITUATIONS
TO AVOID
WHILE IN NEW YORK CITY

they were fools

everyone of us
taped the list
to our lockers
and checked them off
as we committed each
inter-borough sin

Avoid traveling in the city alone!
(what real maniac wouldn't?)

Avoid staying in Battery Park after dark!
(when the real fun began)

Avoid street vendors who may be trafficking
stolen goods!
(where the real deals were)

Avoid accepting rides from strangers!
(thanks Mom for the heads up on that one)

down through
item after item
of weak link warnings
until at the bottom
in bold italics

Avoid falling asleep on subways and ferries!
(how that was really possible
I didn't understand
at first)

the last
reminder
should have been
phrased a bit differently
for the drinking crowd
among us

Avoid passing out on subways and ferries!
(that was the real problem)

I had
many checks
beside the first
and last
entries

for the first
unfortunately
most of my fellow travellers
insisted on returning
to the island
at a reasonable
hour

an unreasonable notion
I thought
considering
the location

for the last
I made many
round trips to Brooklyn
after 4 in the morning
the transit cops rousting me
saying to sit tight
and stay awake
until the train
got back
to Manhattan

no
round trips
to the Bronx
however
the authorities
on the 1 line
always insistent
that I not only wake up
but then exit to wait
on an empty platform
(usually at 137th St
for some strange reason)
for the next
southbound

the worst
was the Staten Island Ferry
always coming to
just as the boat was leaving
the South Ferry Terminal
knowing that round trip
would cut another
miserable hour
out of my life

so standing
on the bow
in the cold morning air
shivering around
a large cup of coffee
I would ensure
my exit
at the next
docking

on or off
any alarmist list
New York City
is certainly
the most spectacular
place in the world
between
4 and 6am