Despite the fact that it was Christmas Eve

And I was traveling alone
To an unfamiliar part of the city
Reading Paths To God By Ram Dass
In a seat by the door

Despite the fact that you
Left one in the car with me
Who I then grilled for info
About how to locate you
To track you down
And make you pay
For what you did to me

Despite the fact that nothing
Was taken but my
Sense of security
And faith in humanity
As my broken glasses
Hit the subway floor
After you struck me in the face
And scurried out the door
Laughing with your friends
Onto the platform

Despite the fact that
The terror in his eyes
While I threatened him
Inspired me to let him go
With no recourse

Despite the fact that I am reminded of
Another teenage boy many years ago
Screaming out the window of a
Moving vehicle startling strangers
Just to make a girl laugh

Despite the fact that after
Eighteen years in the city
I shamed myself for not being
More aware of signs to move
To another part of the train car
Or a seat away from the door

Despite the immeasurable guilt
And the lumps of victimhood
That have and will be felt from
These small cruel acts


I forgive both of you