Waiting

   I am waiting. There I am, see me, waiting on the train station platform. I am waiting for my train. It is a specific train that I am waiting for. When a train begins pulling into the station, I get excited, I think—This is it, this is going to be my train, finally I can get on board. Then I see that it is not my train. I am disappointed. Oh, well. I’ll keep on waiting. It has to come eventually.

   I want you to understand that it is important that I get on the right train. It is essential that I catch the right train. The wrong train won’t do me any good. It would just be riding for riding’s sake. Motion for motion’s sake. No, I must exercise deep patience and wait. Because when my train comes, and I get on board … what then? I will somehow be transfigured. Changed. I will be transported to the new and altogether marvelous. I will become known to myself in a new and different way. Yet there is only one train that can get me there, only one train that can do that, and so I wait. Sometimes I doubt. Why hasn’t my train come? It’s been so long. But has it? Perhaps it just feels really long. Relativity and all that jazz. Yet there have been so many other trains, trains that have cycled and recycled through this station, and my train … never, not once.   

   What if I am waiting on the wrong platform? What if this is the wrong station? The wrong state? Or country? What if I need to switch realities altogether? These ponderances weigh on my mind and cause me anxiety and consternation. Because they all point to the same menacing conclusion: What if I never get on my train? A train that never arrives is impossible to board, right? No matter the answer, I continue to wait. Am I full of faith? Am I deluded? Will my waiting be rewarded? Are my views short-sighted or big-picture-visioned? An I too stubborn and set in my ways that I am missing the opportunities that these other trains present to me? These trains pull in and out of the station, collecting passengers who, seemingly without reluctance or hesitation, board the trains and are whisked away. Yet, despite the continued demonstrations of ease with which these passengers board trains, I cannot do it. Those trains are not my train. But what is my train? Does it even exist? Did I invent it? Do I somehow feel noble and imperiously proud because I refuse to get on any train that isn’t the right train? What do I mean by right? How will I know? Will the train be marked? Will it bear a name that will register and confirm a deep inner knowingness? Ah, yes, this is the train I’ve been waiting for.

   I continue to wait. Patiently and impatiently all at once. That is me, there, in the overcoat and fedora, holding a suitcase, tempted to smoke but not smoking, there I am, somewhat recognizable to myself as a shadowy figure, an apparition, a totem, someone who bears great psychic resemblance to me, someone who is waiting for a train that is running behind, or perhaps, perhaps I am ahead, too far ahead, and the train schedule does not accommodate the prophetic gist of dreamers on platforms.

About John Biscello

Originally from Brooklyn, NY, writer, poet, spoken word performer, and playwright, John Biscello now lives in Taos, New Mexico. He is the author of three novels: Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale, Raking the Dust, and Nocturne Variations, and a collection of stories, Freeze Tag. His fiction and poetry has appeared in: Art Times, nthposition, The Wanderlust Review, Ophelia Street, Caper, Polyphony, Dilate, Militant Roger, Chokecherries, Farmhouse, BENT, The 555 Collective, Instigator, Brass Sopaipilla, The Iconoclast, Adobe Walls, Kansas City Voices, and the Tishman Review. His blog--Notes of an Urban Stray--can be read at johnbiscello.blogspot.com. Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale was named Underground Book Reviews 2014 Book of the Year.
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