“Cattle Train, Cattle Train”


“The Out Crowd” © C.P. Hickey 2013


“Cattle Train, Cattle Train”

Cattle Train! Cattle Train!

My life’s refrain.

Can someone commute my commuter pain?

Oh, how I disdain,

this daily pain.

I can’t sustain,

and must complain.

It’s such a drain.

Fucking insane!


Let me explain.

What’s plainly plain:

Humans behave,

less humane,

when waiting for the Cattle Train.

It’s worse in the rain.

If there’s a delay,

it puts a strain,

on our collective brain.

Because, the Cattle Train,

can’t possibly contain,

all the bane,

pertaining to this mortal plane.

Take for instance, Elaine.

You know, the girl from Spain.

Over there leaning on a cane.

She seems inane,

but, she’s just arcane.

Today she suffers a harsh migraine.

And will not feign the pain,

that the rain causes her curly mane.

While she awaits the Cattle Train,

wrapped in cellophane,

in pouring rain.




Or take that prick from Maine.

What’s his name?


His breath smells of methane.

Humming a neat quatrain.

Standing in the rain.

Waiting for the Cattle Train.




Do you think those that live in Des Plaines deal with such constraints?

One obtains small gains while one abstains from complaints about the Cattle Train.

But, the pain is hard to sustain.

It’s no gravy train.

Ask Lorraine,

sucking on that candy cane.

She survived September’s hurricane.

Only to remain,

waiting for the Cattle Train.




Cattle Train! Cattle Train!

My life’s refrain.

Can someone commute my commuter pain?










“Perceived Slights”

“Perceived Slights”

Look at you over there.


Angry at every turn.

Can you see yourself?

You’re ridiculous.

Your fat equestrian pants thighs squeezing into the last remaining seat.

You flippantly look at the meek gentleman sitting beside you.

You know, the one who’s rail thin.

Your body is invading his space.

You exceed the seat you squeezed into.

One time, you read a snarky article in some snarky magazine, about “man spreading”.

You believe that he is at fault.

But I’ve seen pita bread thicker’n him.

Your furrowed brow, your audible tut.

You’re invading the space of everyone on the train.

You’re “perceived slight spreading”.

Keep your overtly aggressive gestures to yourself, as well as your veiled passive aggressive ones.

Your energy is toxic.

I can’t possibly know what has helped you to arrive here in this moment.

But as I observe you, I can tell it likely that all the things you react to negatively, are decidedly innocuous until you put your charming mind around them.


The gentleman beside you, a registered stoic, has ridden in silence, despite the discomfort of your polyester thigh rubbing his knee every time you jostle to dramatize your perceived slight.

Your stop is coming up.

Better get yourself ready to shake your head because only one half of the doors will open upon exiting.

Also, you will be inconvenienced by those standing to the right on the escalator, as you try to squeeze by.

Lastly, as your bring your morning coffee to your lips, you will shake an admonishing fist in the air at some imagined deity, as the cream the barista put in the cup curdled.


Much like you.

“Appropriate Arrival”



Written while on an Elevated train heading into The Loop searching for a job in Chicago.  Circa 2006.

“Appropriate Arrival”
By Christopher Hickey

Is this the place?
Confusion reigns,
Inbound trains.
Destination unknown.

Traveling light, with a heavy heart.
Where to start?
Difficulties unexpected.
Expel my doubts,
They’re still here.

Resume your life.
Resume is your life.
Paper defines worth.
Can I exist without succinct definition?
Probably not.

Having tried to fail, I succeed.
Failing to succeed, champions my complacency.
Walking to stand still.
Preying on hope.
Waiting for good dough.

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