In the last bench in Meeting I am
all the other women and all of their silence
weaving and knitting and putting
the clothes out to dry. Sometimes
I’m on the subway all those years ago
pressed up against my mother
in growing, in those few moments of sleep
when waking restores the journey,
not the metaphorical one but the physical,
the tremor and sound like fireworks shooting
and air filling tires. Then the parting of doors,
the screech of it, which was anticipation
and forgetfulness, the fear and surety
of each other. The soot always in our eyes.
Then our long walk home to clean them.
Our restored conversation in midair.