On the night I was waiting for them at Logan

First a group of architects came out,

then a guy who, despite the 6 hour jetlag and the eight hour flight, felt as fresh as a rose,

then a man who read all the taxi drivers’ signs looking for his name,

then the woman who thought she had landed in the wrong city,

then the guy who spent the eight hour flight drinking bloody marys and stumbled, happily, out of the doors,

then a man who forgot to put away his passport,

then the guy who tells his wife: follow me, I know what to do, I’ve been to this airport before,

then a man who doesn’t speak English,

then the mother with three children, one in a stroller, another in her arms and the third bawling, who is looking for her husband among the awaiting crowd, but he isn’t there, because he’s late,

then the girlfriend with fresh lipstick on,

then the guy with thirteeen pieces of lugagge, all the same color (fuschia),

then the man wearing flipflops even though it’s thirteen degrees out,

then the flight attendants, all gorgeous,

then a group of loud students,

then the lady in a wheelchair, even if she doesn’t really need it, because she wants to make an impression on her relatives who are waiting for her,

then the two lovers (who are married to other people) who can finally hold each others’ hands in public,

then the guy who stops in the middle of the exit, blocking the flow,

then the man who has his suitcases wrapped up in cellophane so they don’t get ruined,

then the guy with a guitar or surfboard,

then a whole bunch of anonymous people,

then the guy who has a piece of toilet paper stuck to his shoe but hasn’t noticed,

then the man who didn’t feel like coming home,

then the people who say that Boston is really a European city,

then the guy whose grandmother is waiting,

then the man who cheated on her while he was away, and is bringing home his baggage full of guilt,

then the guy who has only been away a short while but parked his car in the long-term lot,

then a man who only gives a small tip (‘after all it’s his job, and he could have done better for himself had he studied a little harder’) to the (Pakistani) man who is carrying his carry-on bag,

then the guy who has just finished his third trip back and forth this month,

then the man who complains about how they are getting carried away with all the security checks,

then the guy who can’t believe the plane didn’t crash,

then the man who has managed to smuggle in an entire Prosciutto di Parma,

then the guy with a scraggly dog,

then the two who just met on the plane and are exchanging phone numbers,

then the man with the duty free bags full of cartons of cigarettes,

then the guy who can’t believe he’s arrived, and looks around in disbelief,

then the man who missed his connecting flight.

And then,

just as I was starting to think I might have missed them, or that I imagined the whole thing, or that I had gotten the date wrong,

my sisters emerged.

And after our hugs and kisses, we went out to smoke.

and then into the car.

with Serena in front
because otherwise she pukes.

(translated by Dan C-P)

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