Rekindle Your Wild Joy and Deep Belonging to the Earth

Riding on the MUNI June 29, 2010

Filed under: All My Relations,Arts,Humor — BrujaHa @ 11:17 am
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a poem meant to be spoken aloud

by Tina Fields

[Note: The MUNI is a form of public transportation in San Francisco, linked municipal railcars (pictured below).  It sort of shakes up and down when it gets going fast; thus the jogging rhythm of this poem.]

So I’m riding on the MUNI…

Yeh I’m riding on the MUNI…

I’m riding on the MUNI…


I just came here from Nevada, on the edge of the Great Basin,

where my very nearest neighbor is a cow five miles away;

Where your psyche reaches out, expanding,

breathing out, and listens to the thoughts of birds –

a hawk!  golden spirals overhead;

bloodmind riveted on rustling,

slightest movement in the grasses…


And I lurch to San Francisco, where I’m riding on the MUNI

And we’re packed in like anchovies but pretend no one is touching:

With my clothes wrapped tight around me I am riding on the MUNI;

With my thoughts wrapped tight around me I am riding on the MUNI


And I’m riding on the MUNI

And I’m riding on the MUNI…


And he swoops!  with talons twisted, each in perfect ballerina’s pointe,

exquisite fatal symmetry, dull gleaming in the twilight;

And my heart it hears the mouse scream!

and my mind shrieks bloody victory!

…and  … somehow I’ve got possession of my nearest neighbor’s paper;

got it clutched here in my talons, with a death-grip on Dear Abby…

I’m here, riding on the MUNI,

with ink tickling my tastebuds

and the scent still in my nostrils of fresh literary kill…


But a furtive glance around… reveals…

I don’t know if they notice!

All their eyes are hid by glasses darkly gleaming in the foglight,

as we strangers huddle lonely, cradled in each others’ feathers;

With our buttocks jammed together

and our minds like shattered sunlight

as we’re riding on the MUNI.



4 Responses to “Riding on the MUNI”

  1. Spider Says:

    I love this but I must point out that what first caught my attention was the fact that MUNI to me stands for “mountain unicycle” … Doesn’t quite fit :0)

    • Tina Fields Says:

      Hee hee! Yeah, you might get in trouble letting your mind shapeshift in that situation. –Or hey, maybe the wings would help! 🙂
      Now you’ve intrigued me, Spider: What sort of rhythm would a mountain unicycle poem follow?

  2. Max Says:

    Wonderful. The rhythm of the poem brought back the physical sensations of riding the streetcars, and the clanking and clattering sounds. I also lived next to a muni line, where each passing streetcar made the windows rattle. More poems please!

  3. kate winningham Says:

    I’m heading to San Francisco tomorrow and I’ll be riding the MUNI. I’ll think of you with each shake, rattle & roll. But what thrilled me the most was being there in Nevada with you, watching the golden eagle. Thanks for the reminder of those visuals.

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