statue of president st. the pavement, the whistle of machines blasting through the teeming corridors. Behind glass, the operators remained outside my field of view. It was as if the vehicles themselves were alive. The few people who were visible had little time to engage with me, so the mood was contained, or maybe the absence of contact created the feeling, a subtle quiet that depended on being autonomously observed – as if I were a statue.

Inside my stony entrails, an animal burrowed through garbage. My eyes refused to focus. The crowd demanded that I release control, restrict the data flow to blocks of light and sound, an amalgam of voices and engine noises, the sluggish churn of my heart.

I entered the bus mechanically, searching the aisle in such a way that none returned my gaze. In the seat I absorbed the dull throb of the engine, the tonal qualities emanating from the pile of humans, unfiltered, nearly every channel full of light and warmth. I quickly realized the bus could not carry so much weight, and so lumbered back into the solar haze.

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