ODD NUMBERS ON THE NORTH

Every once in a while we’ll get this
retired guy wanting
to drive a cab with us
one of those guys who
can’t stand retirement
can’t stand sitting around
who doesn’t know what to do with himself
without a job
without being told constantly what to do
which is exactly the opposite of what
you need to be to be
a good cabby.
The guy is usually an ex-broker or
some kind of thing which sounds like it
should take brains but does not
and so he thinks
the rest of us cab drivers are
idiots.
He doesn’t understand things like
cross streets or
even-numbered houses on the south side of the road
odd numbers on the north
and he doesn’t understand such
a simple decent peaceful human thing
as silence
and he likes to make bad jokes
and he breathes heavy
(without being a smoker)
and he has the little
rat eyes
of a child molester
who thinks
no one knows.