Floating over the Hudson with Victoria Brown in the poem ‘In Transit’

Floating over the Hudson with Victoria Brown in the poem ‘In Transit’
Photo: Victoria Brown.

House of Abundance Poetry’s four-year anniversary event fell in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. In absence of the physical gathering of this mighty community, ALL ARTS partnered with House of Abundance Poetry (HOA) and introduced an ongoing series with a single-word prompt for each writer: quarantine.

House of Abundance Poetry member Victoria Brown is a poet from Arizona. She writes regularly with the Women’s Poetry Workshop and joined the House of Abundance community last year, both of which have been an immense source of inspiration and growth. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Here is her quarantine poem submission, “In Transit.”

“In Transit,” by Victoria Brown

I wake in the middle of the night
wide eyed with worry.
I can hear the hum of the subway,
the veins of our city carrying us.

The way sunlight streams
through the stained glass windows
on the Queens bound J train platform,
how it just about splits me in half.

When the setting sun
melts down the side
of every building facing west.

Three strangers
erupt into laughter,
trying to catch
a cricket on the M train.

When you’ve been floating
over the Hudson for days.
Shifting your weight,
giving up your seats for one another.
Waiting for that moment,
we jolt forward in celebration.

Below the city,
an old woman sighs
through a violin.
I stop to listen,
miss my train.

I make my way up those
well-worn steps, the ones
that seem to take you
straight into the clouds.

Wherein the dead of winter
you can find a clear break
full of amens.

Find a full schedule of poems, to be released weekly in partnership with House of Abundance, here. For more information, future events, and general updates from the community, follow House of Abundance on Instagram at @abundancehouseof.

Top Image: Photo: Victoria Brown.