Express to Barcelona

The man across from me on the train is moaning. He has a pain in his stomach, he says. “I have a pain in my stomach.” He looks at me. “The only thing that makes it feel better is rubbing it like this.” He demonstrates. I have the feeling he is doing something slightly obscene, but I don’t say anything. “Ah,” he says, like I will understand what that means. “Ah,” he says significantly. I look out the window. In a field there is a man holding a woman by the back of her dress. Her hands are in the air, her fingers splayed. She looks like she has been running. She looks not at the man or the sky, but at the train as we pass. An instant and they are gone from my view. I look back at the man across from me, who is still rubbing. I don’t know how to tell him what I saw.

Rebecca Cross lives, teaches, and writes in New England. Her work has appeared in elimae and The Abacot Journal.