110th Street

At 110th Street on the number 1
A couple unwraps Valentine chocolates from a Macy's bag
arguing with each other all the while
the woman holds a bill in her hand, I assume
one she can't pay -- the man pays her
no mind, while at the same time bantering
his smiles and her grimaces combine
to form a subway ride from Hell on wheels to
Hell in an apartment on the Upper West Side
where these forlorn aspiring yuppies reside

A man grades papers
Another puts his fingertips together pensively,
an old-fashioned leather satchel on his lap
He seems not quite together.

A man of indeterminate sex reads the New Yorker.
A woman of indeterminate sex reads a management text.
The woman sitting next to me has a green roll of padding
that belongs under a rug and a guy
at the end of the compartment is absorbed in the Daily News
He wears a leather jacket.

Now the man with pensive fingertips begins to eat a muffin
from the inside of a plastic bag which rustles
each time he breaks off another piece--
louder than the subway noise except
now we are in a station listening
to the express pass on another track
with our doors open -- the sound is deafening

The couple with the candies now hold hands
or rather, she has her hands around his arm
and leans her head upon his shoulder.