POEM: Blackout

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Blackout

during the war he rode the English trains
asking strangers to wake him at his stop
they never did, and he’d find himself lost
in the blacked-out countryside
worried that the Brits would find him
and think he was a German spy
“They’d shoot ya,” he told me
holding on to the bar in the subway
and leaning against his wife
“My Ro,” he called her
they’d just been to the opera
to see Atilla, and now here he was navigating
the depths of this city, trying to
find the next connection and looking for help
to yet another stranger on a train
I grasped his hand as I led his Ro and him
to the shuttle for Grand Central
this time all the lights were on,
and no shots were fired

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