Howard Firkin
Of course, the train starts pulling out while we’re
still scrambling on, or stuffing racks with cases,
and pushing past each other to our places.
We just can’t wait to start our journey there,
apologies and elbows and shy smiles.
Books out or headphones in, or packages
of sandwiches unwrapped, we settle down
and watch the city, field, farmhouse, small town
blur past—steel wheels on steel— it seems it says,
"Dumbsville, Dumbsville, Dumbsville…" for miles and miles.

Against a neighbour’s shoulder or the glass,
heads loll, as slowly we succumb to sleep.
It’s worth the slight discomfort in your arse,
to know the sweet companionship of sheep.