Train Spotting

3 hours till sunrise / an impasse / a vision

1-hundred odd cars just moving rolling
going going now now now
Cranked up sturdy whirling wheels (some 7 8 9 hundred least)
piggybacking piles of Sacred Stuff—
the whole profound plastic mass of gadgets / precious gadgets

Manic-screaming engines shouting Howls of Truth
(miles upon miles upon counties upon states)
Green lites glowing /guiding—
just moving rolling
trekking this beautiful Christ-kissed land

Kingdom of Metal & Muck Material
crystal cage-facade erected by power-horny men
who pissed / who crapped / who died hard work

Darwinian-jawed beast of Lust & Money
Breed & Brag
America—land of the Need
home of the Want

Home of the free-will train of hope
just moving rolling / chasing nite
w/ rising smoke coughed from unknown holes
(exhaust of busy bawdy men)—
it hangs (industrial-incense clouds) in 3am neon April skies

Passing phantom platform-carts just moving rolling—
tremendous truck-trailers stacked in mounds to Heaven
Glorious flatbeds filled w/ shiny lead things
Fancy foreign cars in big bad crates & boxes boxes boxes

Nails & tape / staples / plugs (the multitudes!)
oil tanks / gas & purple poisons ooze
Rusty livestock bins a mess
(something moaning)
Claustrophobic cattle dragged cross endless landscapes

to be salted
to be chewed
to be flushed out by men of Big Balls
women of healthy breasts
children w/ psycho fits of Ritalin-woe

This magic freight just moving rolling—
the total perfection of mass-market-movement
the go-go-go-now-now-now
Towed cars throwing iron / grease—
orange/blue halo-sparks now struck
& tumbling down hills of brush & weed / scattered waste & gunk

The booming blast of insane horns approaching distant intersection-gates
the clank / the bang / the wail & shake
The raging force / the rickety rick- rack-rack of wheels wheels wheels
hitting lumps / riding grooves (nuts & bolts rumble-growl)

on straight-line track laid by sweaty workmen’s hands
big burly wet-mouthed workmen’s hands (sticky sticky American hands)
years past / before me / before you / your parents breathed an inch of life
Just moving rolling—
hissing brakes (a useless tap / a screech / a grind)

Just you—god you—just try to stop this billion-ton brigade
just moving rolling
w/ prophetic hobo hitching ride back end—
hazed in paper-bag-booze escape
exempt from day after day of wicked grind

I see him schizo simple smile—
he waves / he signals me in Soul / calling out w/ dirty-angel noise of
& Freedom

I see him always in my mad mush mind burned out / so gone—
just moving rolling / free of time / so free of time
so un-America
so Proud / so Real
so unlike me—a rat-race drone unfeeling

obedient / hollow / structured / bland
Waiting for a train to pass
that I may drive my go-go-go-now-now-now
path to Mediocrity & Woe…
dreaming of the Holy Hobo-Life I’d die to Lead

c b snoad
published in MiddleWestern Voice (spring 2002)
winner of the 2002 Carl H. Carlson Poetry Contest at Elmhurst College
edit 1-31-17