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I board the train in Boston, the Rockport line, going north. The car is cold, and I wish I had a coat. It’s fall, and so I watch as the buildings turn to trees farther down the line, the leaves already brown, kicked up, blowing in the slipstream.
I watch others board at later stops, the woman with her baby sleeping in her arms, the man in the suit heading home from work, the group of teens coming back from a day in town. No one disembarks.
My ticket is in my pocket, but the conductor doesn’t appear. I watch out the window as towns come and go. When I get bored, I close my eyes.
By the time the train slows for the final stop, I look around and see the mother with her baby, the businessman, and the teens, all waiting in line to get off. We come to a stop and get off one after the other. Our feet on the ground, we each go in different directions. I walk east, past the Union and Old Parish cemeteries, out to Back Harbor, where I look out at the ocean till dark.
After receiving his MFA in creative writing from Emerson College, Jacques Denault began teaching first year writing as an adjunct lecturer at Merrimack College, where he is currently employed. His work has appeared in Hobart, Fourteen Hills, Writer's Digest, and elsewhere.