Woman in Black

The train is crowded with commuters on their way home.  For the most part it looks like every other evening, everybody seems to blend into each other, a mass of people with no real distinguishing features, crammed into a metal tube that occasionally stops and squeezes out part of the blob. 

At the first such stop after I melted into this blob, after the train has expelled all the occupants that belong on this platform, a distinguishing feature gets on the train.  Maybe she is beautifully unremarkable to most, but I am immediately drawn to her outfit.  All black and perfectly matched.  There is a story she is trying to tell with this outfit.  First of all, the blacks are all the same, not something you would notice unless you have seen it.  None more faded than the other.  Even the black of the boots matches the outfit.  Remarkable.  Was that planned? 

The other thing that really stands out is the total lack of color, except black and flesh.  Most of the non conformists you see in this part of town have the same u inform on.  Predominantly black, but always some color showing somewhere.  Maybe shoes, nail polish, or even a bra strap that won’t stay on a shoulder.  Not her, no sign of color at all.  It makes me want to find out what is underneath.  Not underneath this perfect black outfit, I want to melt into her.  I want to see the world from her eyes.  What has driven her to choose these clothes to face the world in.  Is her closet full of such outfits?  If I could see through her eyes, would the world look dark?  I don’t think so.  I think colors would look more vivid, to the point of sensory overload.  I would have to wear black to have refuge from them.

I think about my own nail polish, safely hidden under the black crinkled leather of my shoes.  Maybe this is her reason?  The black is camouflage.  By standing out in this perfect outfit, she has hidden from the world.  You can’t see any further than the dazzlingly dull clothes.  The black absorbs the gaze and protects what’s inside.  Could she be hiding things she wants no one else to know? 

My stop is near.  I shuffle towards the door so the tube can squeeze me out when they open.  I want to hug her, comfort her, see if the black would swallow me like it does the stares.  Instead, I am spit onto the platform and she has disappeared in the crowded train. 

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