921. Journey, by Tomas Transtromer

On the subway platform.
A crowd among billboards
in a staring dead light.

The train comes and fetches
faces and briefcases.

Darkness next. We sit
like statues in the cars
hauled into the tunnels.
Strain, dreams, strain.

At stations below sea level
the news of darkness is sold.
People moving melancholy,
mum, beneath clockfaces.

The train carries a load
of street clothes and souls.

Looks in all directions,
passing through the mountain.
Nothing changing yet.

But near the surface begins
the hum of freedom's bees.
We emerge from the earth.

The countryside flaps its wings
once, and then subsides
under us, wide and greenish.

Shucks of corn blow in
across the platforms.

End of the line! I ride
beyond the end of the line.

How many aboard? Four,
five, hardly more.

Houses, roads, skies,
fjords, mountains
have opened their windows.

(trans May Swenson)

Source: Selected Poems, 1954-1986

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