When do we first see the world as it is? Not a perfect and well-ordered world but a world untidy, slightly broken and not as we had thought? I was a boy. My mother, father and sister and I were traveling on a train. We had boarded the Pullman car the evening before and slept in a cozy room. The train clicked and swayed. The engine’s whistle entered my dreams. At dawn the train slowed. Bells clanged at crossings as we came to a great city. We entered the city not by some broad boulevard but by the servants’ entrance. I, from my perch on the top bunk, peered out the window and there another world, houses tight together, small plots with vegetables, laundry hanging across back porches. I could see in the windows and there the people of the city who rose early to labor all day and return at night to their homes by the railroad tracks.
This dismissal was originally published in September of 2013