Ode to the MTA

Subway TokenI’d be in big trouble if it weren’t for the NYC Mass Transit Authority. And while it’s not always perfect, it gets the job done.  Most of my commuting over several decades has been within Manhattan and Queens with less frequent trips to the Bronx and Brooklyn, but after taking thousands of subway rides I feel the subway system is due some love from me so here goes.


Hail the MTA

For their trains with power and grace

Transporting millions of commuters

From place to place


Love the E train’s speed

Except on weekends

When it grinds to a halt

And often offends


With constant track work

And regular delays

Taunting strap hangers

Until the end of Sunday


Remember the 9?

It lasted just a few years

Then vaporized into the ether

And never again did appear


Spent years on the Shuttle

Waiting forever near the track

For a train that simply

Goes east to west and back


Took many rides on the A train

With one open eye

Often missing my stop

And ending up at street 125


Years later came the V then the M

To ease F train congestion

Whether it helped or not

Is still a big question


The 1, 2 and 3

The 6, 5 and 4

Narrower than the other trains

Struggling to get in the door


And once I squeeze in

I wish I had not

Because I’m standing next to a man

Using 5 seats as a cot


Back in the 80’s

The 1 train was so seedy

Every foot covered

With so much graffiti


For a change of pace

I ride the 7

Above ground with phone reception

It’s like a small slice of heaven


For my work commute

I prefer the B

But usually draw the short straw

And end up on the C


Take a ride on the N train

If you want  food that is Greek

Often served with strong Ouzo

That is not for the meek


If I can’t get an E train

I favor the F

With its loud screeching wheels

That will make you go deaf


Taking the D train

I’m never satisfied

Muttering under my breath

It’s not the train I wish to ride


The J/Z and  L lines

I must confide

I only rode once

And as for the Q, I was never inside


I remember the G train

My childhood ride

With seats of sharp wicker

Piercing my side


Ugly and green

It looked like a tank

Had no air conditioning

Man, that ride stank


Now I hop on the R train

To visit my childhood stop

Back then the fare was 20 cents

Compared to the $2.50 I now drop


But I’m not complaining

The subway’s still got appeal

With transportation to four boroughs

It’s still a great deal



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