the cabbie wears a broad rimmed brown hat
leather braided around the edges
i can’t see his face, just
the white tufts of mutton chops on either side
we ride down fifth avenue in silence
he guffaws at a woman leaving a black sedan
carrying bags from the Met
he describes to me, i do not see
we drive by the Met
Who takes a chauffeured car from here to there, two blocks?
Maybe she had multiple destinations? I laugh.
He laughs too. Those could have been old bags.
It’s an alternate hypothesis
we drive across the park.
my buddy, way back when, a million years ago
in the 80’s. my buddy started the first ever paratransit.
i drove a man across the Queensboro bridge, oxygen tank and all.
he said to me, if i stop talking and you hear wheezing
plug me back in. sure enough, halfway across the bridge
he stops talking and i have to stop at the side to plug him back in.
he laughs. i laugh. we wait at the light.
he drives slowly. i don’t mind.
another girl, sweet as can be, beautiful strawberry blonde hair.
she and her boyfriend were hitchhiking cross country
summer of love
they fell asleep in the back of a station wagon and she woke up a quadriplegic
the car had turned multiple times.
we arrive at my destination. a couple waits at the corner.
the doorman approaches the cab as i pay.
i get out and wonder briefly if there is somewhere else i need to go.