The sights through a window of a bus

The beast rumbles beneath me,
Coughing and choking
In the smog of its neglect.
It lumbers on, wobbling across
Patchwork streets with tears
In the sewing.

Steam rises from an old man
As we trundle slowly on
past his lonely walk.
His tattered gloves and coat,
A feeble failing barrier
against the chill.

We pass his crumbling home,
Built a long way back now.
Temporary, they said,
50 years ago.
It'll serve well as
A makeshift coffin tonight.

Struggling on, the beast passes
A line of patient people,
Waiting for life.
A little community centre,
Halfway starving,
A package at a time.

They trudge on past a ghost,
Who begs them for
Their nothing.
It gazes into empty space,
Made an abscence by pity,
A scourge by blame.

I step from the beast's maw,
Its teeth snapping shut behind me.
Yet still the smog lingers, and
As I turn to look,
I see it hangs about the land.

A wreath of endless decline,
Choking us.

Submitted: January 07, 2023

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