Riding the Rails
Ghosts don’t walk unless they have to. A last resort kind of thing. The train, now that’s a luxury. I’ve ridden with beasts and humans, but only a handful of each can see my once handsome face and lank hair resembling ill-cut string.
There are those who scream and stuff fists or handkerchiefs into their mouths for fear I might enter them between their parted lips. They caterwaul until I think my dead ears will bleed though I have been bloodless for decades. These are the ignorant ones and the ones I hate most. Why? Because they believe they are above death. That they could never, will never be me. For them, I pick up my old violin and play songs that hum like grinding cartilage and bones cracking. It might be cruel, but it is the only fun I have anymore.
There are a few travelers not bothered by me in the slightest. They read their paper, clutch their purses, or munch on hay, unaware of what waits for them at the next stop. One can only guess what is at the end of the line, no one truly knows but the cruel, cruel Fates.
How did I end up here? I rode the train to work and back. Everyday. Until that day. When a piece of dry toast, gobbled hastily, lodged in my throat. I never made my stop. And now, no one waits at the end of the line. Not for me.
Postcard Stories Podcast – An Author Reading.
Oi Vey, slightly bleak but a good representation of the mundane life some must lead.
I’ve always been intrigued by the older movies when train transportation was so commonly used—commuting down the line to get to work or to see family. This long train car just seemed to go on forever so I thought my character must have to as well;)
Wow!! I love this Postcard and this is definitely going into my Top Ten Favorites! Vivid and with texture I felt all of it. And from the ghost’s POV! Oh but for the things that might have been…
So glad you enjoyed it, Michelle! I’m always looking for that typically ‘unheard’ voice to tell the story. Somehow a ghost just seemed to fit with this train. Thanks for reading!