mneme: (oldharp)
Strike the Rail
Joshua Kronengold
(ttto "Strike the Bell" -- trad)

You're heading for an interview--and starting to run late,
You hope they'll offer you a job, and don't want them to wait.
You swipe right at the turnstyle,
Hear a beep, head forward, when,
The turnstile goes ke-chunk and stops,
it says: "swipe again!"

"Swipe again at this turnstile"
It says repeatedly,
A line forms quick behind you and they murmur angrilly.
You try to calm your heartbeat, raise your card once more and then,
You hope for "Go" but still it says to you: "Swipe again".

You're heading to pick up your date, and due at half past six,
In one pocket's a metro card--the other Broadway tix,
But at the only turnstile, there's a line and you can ken,
That at the front there's someone getting "please, swipe again."

"Swipe again at this turnstile"
It says repeatedly,
A line forms quick behind her and you murmur angrilly.
She tries to calm her heartbeat, raise her card once more and then,
You hope for "Go" but still it says to her: "Swipe again".

You've gotten to a worldcon, and you're paying at the door,
You hope the con will rock, and that your roomate will not snore.
You strike a conversation with a girl whose badge says "Wren",
When the volunteer at reg says "could you please swipe again?"

"Swipe your credit card again--it didn't seem to scan,"
You know the volunteer means well, but this was not your plan,
You don't want to be on line, but join the other fen,
And so you hope, that you won't hear these words: "swipe again!"

"Swipe again at this turnstile"
It says repeatedly,
A line forms quick behind you and they murmur angrilly.
You try to calm your heartbeat, raise your card once more and then,
You hope for "Go" but still it says to you: "Swipe again".

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Joshua Kronengold

May 2017

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