Shades of Grey

April 13, 2010
Hazy smoke fills the train car. At the front a man hawks glow in the dark stars. Talk and laughter fill the air. There is a sense camaraderie here. We are all going to the same place in the same fashion. We uncomfortably sit on the same wooden benches and breath the same sweaty, smoky air.

The train pulls into a station. A boy gets up, making his way to the front of the car. He wears a baggy, grey sweater that looks about six sizes too big for him. He walks slowly. I can't quite put my finger on why he stands out for me but he does. As I watch him he becomes more and more out of place. As he steps onto the platform he draws his hands up into his long sleeves against the brisk spring air. The sweater seems to fit him better as I look on. It doesn't get smaller it just...fits.

The train pulls out of the station. As it begins to gather speed I turn for one last look at the boy. Pressed up against a chain link fence he gazes out over a construction site. It is the single loneliest thing I have ever seen.

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MermaidFairyPrincess said...
May 20, 2010 at 11:03 am
Oh, and the second sentence DOES make sense if you put the dashes in. Mystery solved!
MermaidFairyPrincess said...
May 20, 2010 at 11:02 am

Beautiful! The best writers are able to get their point across without being overly wordy, and you've painted a very vibrant picture in just a few paragraphs.

I also like the way the backdrop of the train, which is essentially transitory, emphasizes the loneliness of the boy. Very poignant.

Earthlingmaybe said...
May 4, 2010 at 1:49 pm

I love this story. I puts me right back in so many trains I have been in. You notice things that I miss, but create the atmosphere I feel.

The second sentence needs dashes (glow-in-the-dark stars) for me to get it on the first run through. Maybe you had them in and didn't recognize the sentence without them.


Earthlingmaybe replied...
May 7, 2010 at 7:16 am
Thanks Mom!
Earthlingmaybe said...
Apr. 25, 2010 at 9:27 am
Just to let you know, the second sentence isn't mine. I have no idea where it came from so just try to ignore it
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