Writing without my glasses on the bus about the bus and the man. Could be a deception but no too much empathy floats around this guy like the photos of auras taken by Soviet scientists. A huge man. Big hands I cannot tell how old. Perhaps he’s about to retire in a few years aged by hard work. Perhaps he’s retired and he’s coming from a job to keep things afloat.
At home there is a woman he adores. Has done since they met as teenagers. She needs his gentleness now more than ever. He could hold her up like a finch on an outstretched finger. He watches he sees he notices everyone who boards the bus. He’s shy. Was he too big as a child? Bullied because he didn’t want to do the things expected of a boy his size. Strong. Born strong. Big hands. Long fingers not thin not fat not flaccid like sausages. They could play bass–fiddle and guitar. They could drive a nine pound hammer.
Standing room only. He’s looking up at the young man who boarded hanging from the inadequate strap–those only “work” if packed, yes, like sardines. You can see it in his eyes and facial twitches working himself up to offer the seat next to him by a subtle shift, trying to make himself scarce by way of invitation. Unnoticed. Left hand, tentative, taps a sleeve to gain attention and a gesture joined by a nod. The seat is accepted.
He’s tired it seems or maybe I mistake quiet for tired. He has been tired in his life though. There is no bitterness. He wonders how she is feeling tonight. How he can help her. Did she have a good day? He longs for home, her, cat in lap, dog by their side, bird on his shoulder.