jan oskar hansen

A Quiet Smoke - Poem by jan oskar hansen

A Quit Smoke

The train stopped at a small station on a bleak plateau,
I stepped on to the terminus to smoke a cigarette which
I deeply inhaled and enjoyed; so intensely I didn’t see
the train leaving. I ran but my feet wouldn’t move,
at the back of the last carriage my doctor stood, “help,
my feet won’t move, I shouted.” “It’s your own fault,
The doctor said, “For eating so much chocolate.”
At the kiosk- inside the station house- I asked the lady,
selling newspaper, if she could help, but she needed
the number of the train and whether I traveled first class
or not. I didn’t know what number train, but said 112,
and yes, first class, thinking that would help. Since I was
dressed, like an Eskimo, from head to toe in sealskin,
and it was seal hunting season in Canada, people gave
me dark looks and when “Guardian” readers folded their
papers into truncheons I fled, got into a car that was just
standing there, drown down the road in the hope of
getting on the train at the next station, but made a wrong
turn and ended up inside a kaleidoscope, where doctors
and people, who like plastic tables, dare not enter.

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Poem Submitted: Sunday, March 30, 2008

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