The Wisdom of Others
Concerning Travel

"He that travels much knows much."

~~ Thomas Fuller, M.D. (1732)

"My heart is warm with the friends I make,
And better friends I’ll not be knowing;
Yet there isn’t a train I wouldn’t take,
No matter where it’s going."

~~ Edna St. Vincent Millay (1921)

"Toward, Not Away"

They run, the man and the girl,
she taking four steps for every one of his;
he lifting her lightly and pulling her along.

They must run, the man with the bag
and the little girl in tow –
breathing hard are they in complete accord.

Thus they run; one break in step
or in breath for either and they know
fate will fall between the rails.

So, they run, vaulting over steam blasts
and benches in the way; past billboard ads
for Broadway shows and business men in booths.

Yet they run with precision, with a plan;
she learns to place each tiny foot squarely
where his own feet fell. In time with him, she is.

On they run, beside the tracks
and through the hordes; by sleeping bums,
abandoned books, and valets tending luggage.

Still they run as he hoists her masterfully
into conductor’s hands; in one moment of panic
she is alone – then he pulls himself on board.

They scan the car; he exhales first.
They pick backward seats for luck.
He has more to teach about catching trains
and living life when they gather where they’re going.

© 2000 MJM


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