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talking to myself

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A boyhood memory from Panama

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A bus on a Friday afternoon

Filled with tired workers eager to get home,

People quiet with their own thoughts

Either ignoring or enduring one another.

Three boys get on with high spirits,

The silence unbroken by those who inwardly groan

Only wanting some peace before they get home

With their endless chores a-waiting.

The three get the only empty seat,

Sensing the mood attempting quiet

But to no avail,

Such are boys when 12 years old.

One boy leans over and tells a joke

A snicker follows then a snort,

And evolves into a sharp laugh

Getting ssshhhhhh’s from the others.

Quiet comes for a second or less

When such a guraff came forth,

Like Goofy from Walt Disney

Suddenly inhabited the boy.

The other two joined in the laughter,

The adults tired, tried to fight it,

But one by one feel victim to the virus,

That slowly, and then, more quickly spread

The whole bus burst forth into laughter

Such a sound, loud, alive, and joyful,

Just laughing because of the laughter

Of a 12 year old boy.

The driver had to pull over blinded by tears,

Bending over laughing and gasping for air,

Trying to stop he had a route to finish

But he gave in to the hilarity without much fight.

It stopped once and the bus quieted,

Then someone snicker and it began again,

Louder perhaps than before

Each person a joyful member of the choir.

Three time in all the chorus stopped and then continued,

Just simple laughter

That took all by surprise

By the simple laughter of a 12 year old boy.

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