The Box of Shame

The Box of Shame
by Fanz Hugo

He knew it was coming.
Eventually he was given
The Box of Shame,
by his favorite employer.

He kept quiet as usual
and walked slowly
out of the building,
holding the box.

Everyone on the bus
glimpsed at it. It was
just too obvious
to ignore the notion.

A youngster, holding
his smartphone, came up
to him and asked,
“Mind if I take a photo?”

He looked up
at the young man
and paused for a brief second,
then started smiling.

“You see, that’s the spirit!
No I don’t mind! Not at all!”


11:55AM on a Workday

11:55AM on a Workday
by Fanz Hugo

It’s five to twelve,
when the station goes
ephemerally silent
with walking ghosts.

Even musicians take
the moment to enjoy
yet another prelude
to the instant chaos.

AM to PM sounds
like a huge shift,
like from night to day.
Nothing happens.

Not much chitchat
aboard the train.
Two young women
talk loudly. Don’t care.

One elder woman
takes her nap,
looking up whenever
the voiceover starts.

The next station
is High Park,
where the sakura trees
are dying of old age.

If I was a writer,
I’d tell the story
of their afterlives
in Japanese.

Waiting is the only
condolence that seems
to matter for now,
here at the station.