We pass through stores, and wait in lines. We cycle our tickets, and walk through the turn-style. Fragments of paper and trash litter the ground as some memory of life and time. I’m in the world, a part of the world.
The tiny strips of DNA trace back to survival. We are surviving, and doing so much more. I walk by the guy on the bridge posted on his milk crate. He laughs at the tourist walking by as they avoid eye contact and shuffle to the furthest side. “Scared” he says with a smile and shakes his cup a little louder.
Fear, I think to myself, is something few people truly know. Those brushes with the darkness that change our perception forever in the new world are seldom seen. I feel connected as the street poet tells me about sleeping on the train and how brushing your teeth every couple days is just as good as three times a day. I feel a connection because at a point I was embracing that feeling on top of a Humvee on the side of a mountain staring at the stars past the brim of a helmet. At least I knew I would eat.
It takes a special kind of person to live between the lines of society, a halfway person melting reality, and some foreign dream. Surviving sleeping above the warm air of the subway grate. Shaking the cup with the tiny metal discs that mean nothing, or everything. They deal with being ignored, brushed off, and feeling angry. From the “heroes” of a nation to the outsiders living on the banks, it’s really all the same.