courtesy transport east l.a. dirigible lines

the bus harry talked about

i don’t remember the story

something about his last day on the job

the night job driving the bus

(one time i got on the bus at the airport

and it wasn’t harry driving, it was koenig

who ran out on his family)

harry’s story

was about something like driving all right

every night through desolate spaces of the city

with strange characters or lost citizens of the night

or no one, nobody

and harry (a bus driver! harry!

who doesn’t drive anywhere, who takes the bus

and the subway and light rail everywhere,

and who i see sometimes at the video store

which is next to the train station)

(harry even takes the bus or train

to valencia, where i used to drive

to teach—like harry—

when i had a broken ankle, post-op

my foot would turn throbbing black if i let it down,

so i used to drive 45 minutes on the 5 with my foot

resting on the dashboard)

what was his story about?

i must have been paying attention

maybe i was worried about something

i think harry’s story was about being the solitary bus driver

of the night bus through the night city

strange people getting on and off that he couldn’t relate to

or talk to

and a violent altercation of some sort

breaking out on his bus

with some shadowy stranger

beating up a woman on his bus or raping her?

and harry stopping the bus “in the middle of nowhere”

on some empty stretch of avenue with nothing around

no one in sight

and harry wakes up on the bus

or perhaps in the street next to the bus

covered in his own blood, beaten up

alone, except maybe a suitcase

he said something about a suitcase, maybe

i do remember that harry said

he decamped the bus, he left the bus there

lights on, the bus running, he quit

the bus driving business, walked off into the night

then and there and never went back

and what was i thinking when harry said all this

i don’t know

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