Being Above and Inside

The bell of the flower leads them to the pollen sac

So, it was the beginning of it, which was the end of that.

Which makes you start from the bottom and work your way through it.

Binoculars, Bifocals,

Telescope, Tunnel vision

Then a view from box seats.

Hummingbirds and Wasps drink the same Nectars.

The bell of the flower leads them

To the pollen sac.

It hangs off the branch, the stem,

The base, the roots.

Its when Hummingbirds and Wasps

Have the same purpose,

It’s like being

Above and

Inside.

Just Before Lunch

Next stop
5 or 6 passengers are spread out at the stop area, with a distance from the bench, where a woman in her 50s, dressed for the streets is sitting alone.
I recognize her, Mental Illness. Not sure how she gets by in the world
I think she stays at several different shelters, she is loud, has aggressive expressions, cuss words, she is angry

A couple in their 30s step onto the Bus on College way.

He has a $5 bill that he slides into the cash box as I hand him 2 transfers.

“Thank you, sir, I have a question” sure I said leaning toward my plexiglass screen to hear him.

“My wife and I are having lunch in the International district.

Will this bus get us there?”

Yes, it will be my last stop, and I’ll make sure I announce we are there.

“Thank you”

They make thier way to their seats in front just behind the ADA section on the door side.

Next stop:

5 or 6 passengers are spread out at the stop area, with a distance from the bench, where a woman in her 50s, dressed for the streets is sitting alone.

I recognize her, Mental Illness.  Not sure how she gets by in the world

I think she stays at several different shelters, she is loud, has aggressive expressions, cuss words, she is angry.

The passengers hurriedly load before her, she takes her time to grab her stuff, sits in the ADA section just in front of the young couple.

As I pull out she is starting to cuss and chew out the invisible people in front and behind her.

At the next stop, a few people move away towards the back.

We continue through Ballard, Freemont, and Westlake as she relives whatever torments her as her volume gets louder, then she’s quiet, then starts in again.

We are downtown on 3rd and Marion,

She exists the bus, in front of the couple, He leans in in front of his wife

Protecting her from what might be an unexpected blow from her,

The woman is looking at me as she exists and is yelling at me

As I am now the focus of her anger as she exits.

The couple relax and lower their heads when she is gone.

My next stop is 3rd and James.

(1 stop away from the last stop)

Another woman, a little bit older,

Same condition gets on the bus,

Sits a few seats behind the couple,

Begins her rant,

We arrive at the end of the route, 3rd, and Main,

I ask if they are good from here,

Their eyes are wide open, she is visibly shaken.

He is not happy with their choice of transportation for the day.

“yea, were good” he says as his head shakes.

My layover at the base was quiet

Cookie and coffee.

Made my way back North

3rd and Union,

I have one passenger on my bus.

There is a Man, 20s with blood on his head, inebriated,

I watch him as I pull in and hope he doesn’t want on.

He sees my bus and backs up indicating to me, that this is not his bus.

I begin to pull away.

He walks into the side of the bus,

I stop.

He swaggers, then falls

I call it in.

My supervisor arrives, fire dept.

The one passenger steps off waits for another bus, wishing me luck.

A pedestrian has the incident on her phone and explains to the supervisor how he just walked into the bus.

And was drunk and yelling about a girl before the incident.

He is ok as the fire department arrived

He refused care, wished us all a good day, and to drive safe.

Metro towed the bus back to base (no damage just to do some prep work in case he tries to sue)

They drive me back to base, arrange another bus for me, send me out

I finish my day at the end of the next run,

Go back to base,

Fill out the paperwork

Go home, make myself a peanut butter sandwich,

Go to bed listening to a Sasquatch Podcast.

Last Moments Of A Mallard

Her babies nervously quacking and jittering movements the Mom quacking back torn between leaving him and protecting her babies.

I’m driving North on College way at about 7:15 am on a Saturday.

It lays in front of North Seattle Community College, which has a Park like feeling with Natural growth trees and wetland.

I have seen birds of all varieties, rabbits, raccoons, many squirrels.

It makes a nice drive as it is in contrast to my trip through town with its landscape of homeless camps, broken windows, traffic.

That morning as I arrived at 98th   street stop sign,

To the right, almost to the sidewalk, a mother duck was pecking at what I believe was her male. Its Greenhead twisted over its back, legs splayed in a way that isn’t possible for unbroken bones.

Her babies nervously quacking and jittering movements the Mom quacking back torn between leaving him and protecting her babies.

Ducks seem to struggle daily to get by.

I pull into my next stop.

One of my regulars, an elderly gentleman whose right arm hangs dead

He tucks the hand of that arm into his jacket pocket as he moves by me.

A young couple are blowing out a mouthful of weed before they enter the bus.

They look at me confused when I say good morning, move to the back without a word or paying.

Traffic is a bit heavy that morning as I make my way to Market Street in Ballard. Then right to head south on Leary way.

I pass homeless tents that have been there through the pandemic.

One of the Tents has a fire going in their pit. Its black smoke is dirty from burning some oil-based product.

The Sun hits my eyes pretty strong just before I pass under the Ballard bridge as I move closer to Freemont.

I open my door at the Leary way and 8th street stop.

A young man, 20 maybe…. Has his fentanyl pipe out, as my doors are open he says, wait a minute… then lights his pipe.

I close my doors refusing him entry as I continue on to Freemont.

He is yelling at the bus as I pull away

“Are you kidding me”??

“Fuck you”!!

I’m stopped in Freemont where the bridge is up, load up another regular on his way to work, taps his card, and sits in the center bench seat very back.

The young couple try to engage him in conversation,

He has no time for them.

I’m driving through downtown, on 3rd ave, they have done a lot to clean up the streets.

Less tents, less garbage, but I get the impression they are playing homeless “whack amole “as people are just more spread out now.

Union stop I let someone off

A homeless guy unshaven for months, old dirty jeans, t-shirt dirty coat, hair crusted with gunk jumps on eating his cereal out of a plastic cup. Gets off at the next stop, grunts then throws his cereal cup onto the floor spilling its milk and raisin bran onto the floor.

I’m now at my layover in front of the Central base.

The Security and Sheriff people are with another homeless guy who is laying on the sidewalk next to a bus stop.

His pants are below his hip, the rest of his clothes are a mess,

The Sheriff is loudly asking him…..

Heroin? Did you take Heroin?

The sun is directly over them, blue sky with very few white clouds, there are shadows cast by standing people in the center of this turmoil, sidewalk with trash of old food, cans, liquor bottles.

Police car lights flashing orange, red, white.

It is the Mallard I think of,

Crossing the street with his family in front of him at the sidewalk as he is struck, twisting his neck and back as he is forced under the car then thrown to the side.

His last moment had his family in view walking towards a pond amongst trees with the sun in the sky with few white clouds to cloud his day.

To Be Human in the Milky Way Melting Pot

It is the continuous journey of stones and souls.
Dust being churned into another type of stone.
We can imagine stones on a seashore over the eons becoming
Sand.

Music generously permitted by Randy Hathaway

“American Sonata” to hear more of his beautiful music go to RandyHathaway Music.com