Almost 9 years ago I found myself traveling cross-country by train, going back home for the summer holiday. The cars were all packed, so I had to make do with whatever little space remained in the hallway. The weather outside was superb, although a storm was gathering in the distance.
The people on board looked stressed out. Some have missed the earlier trains, others, who had never seen the inside of a second-class train car, complained about the conditions. Me? I had just passed my last exam in my second year as a Bachelor and was staring down three months of blissful peace and relaxation — not a care in the world!

Halfway through the trip, I noticed this other student propped against the glass, a few compartments down the hall. She seemed just as equally unperturbed by all the commotion going on inside the train as I was; enjoying the ride. Bound for the terminal station, I watched as most of the passengers got off at their own stops, my silent companion included. At that point there were even a couple of empty seats in one of the compartments.  I fished for a pen and paper, then tossed my bag over one of the seats and sank into the other. Here’s the final revision of what went down on the page that day:

Thanks for listening!

Image by Rimfrost.

Transcript:

My Reflection and I

Thus my journey begins here,
with a pinch of doubt, and a dash of fear.
No music, sound, not a single utter.
Just the backpack and some water.

The sun was in my eyes as well as soul.
A crowd surrounds me — an ever-moving flow.
Fields of green in each direction,
yet through the window there it was — my own reflection.

It glanced at me. I knew not how to act.
There was not much left to do, but smile back.
A gust of wind, as if without a trace,
moved gently across my face.

The minutes passed, a child ran by.
We smiled at that — my reflection and I.
Then again it caught me in its sight.
I was stunned, still I felt no fright.

We shared a common vision and were aware,
it surrounds us — lakes, mountains — beauty everywhere.
Here we found our peace, our one escape,
in each and every changing landscape.

Stubborn, but in no case weak,
we just giggled, glanced — could not afford to speak.
Like two strangers, ones without a link.
The train stopped — a station — and all was gone within a blink.

Among the sea of people swaying as if they were crops
It stood there, untouched by strife, nor fear, not even raindrops.
I asked myself: “Could this all be true?”

What I saw there was no reflection — It was you.

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