Suddenly he started the confession.

He wanted, he said, to distance himself

from a relationship that dragged him along,

to be alone for a while

to rediscover his lost self.

I didn’t discourage my train fellow passenger

though I had tried the same years ago

and had discovered that I hadn’t lost myself 

it was simply hidden inside me —

and spent hours of preprogrammed loneliness

trying to create rings with my smoke

as my uncle Paul used to do.

Then later, I carried on, along with

cigarettes I quit all my secret desires

for all the unachievable things I wished to do.