North

She
stands there
next to the entrance
to the 405 holding a cut
up of a cardboard box that
says “north,” with an arrow below
it pointing up. Adequately clothed in the
winter cold, with her hair messy from the wind,
she smiles as the cars pass by, drivers not giving her
a glance. I wonder what it’s like to be that woman to trust a
complete stranger to pick her up and take her closer to the place that
she needs to be. What if she doesn’t need to go north; what if she only wants
to go north to see what it looks
like but has no means to go there
by herself? With only a general
idea of where you’re headed but not
exactly where you’re going, you
rely on and trust other people to
take you there. Maybe you’ve been
doing this for years, you left your
friends and family behind, and
your social life is brief interactions
with strangers. You have no place
to call your own, no house to call
a home, because you live all over
the place, and your home is all
that makes up the land of the free.

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