Ben Nardolilli

Well Spent

Chorus and ballyhoo tonight, a mob of drinkers

swirls along the train platform,

and I’m one of them, loving the night

while getting ready to serve morning with a hangover

That’s future me, though, in the present,

I’m soaked inside and ready for the hipsterstan

that awaits over the river.

Is it over? We can go under too, it’s all still beautiful

La Resistance 8/20/2018

We break sugar packets together,

the father and the son and me, a trinity

the dining car shifts left and we adjust

while looking out at the Cascades

We go through a tunnel and the son

is excited, is this it, the 8 miles

of darkness he read about?

The longest rail tunnel in North America.?

It’s just a regular line that goes

through one of the mountains,

he sighs, we eat, I drink my coffee,

we talk about where we come from

I tell them I’m from Brooklyn,

they tell me they’re from Janesville, WI

I don’t bring up politics

and they keep the subject away

We talk about the orchards around us,

the red apples and green pears,

everything looks plump and ripe

hanging on the verdant branches

More coffee comes and we rip open

more creamers and more sugar packets,

this is how it will be, some day,

this is how it must be, if we’ll go on

Sitting at the table together,

breaking sugar packets in silence,

and yet enjoying a true peace, everyone

able to get a seat without reservations

Again, the boy thinks we’re entering

the Cascades Tunnel, he’s excited,

I’d rather we go through flames,

so I can and see where I’m heading

Ben Nardolilli currently lives in New York City. His work has appeared in Perigee Magazine, Red Fez, Danse Macabre, The 22 Magazine, Quail Bell Magazine, Elimae, The Northampton Review, Local Train Magazine, SLEET MAGAZINE, The Minetta Review, and Yes Poetry. He blogs at and is trying to publish a novel.