Snippet taken from an old dream blog I was keeping in 2014:
Train in post-apocalyptic world… We (a crowd of commuters, including myself, some were semi-recognisable as ‘versions’ of my friends and family members, others were strangers, as far as I can recall) were waiting for its arrival (it was Northern Rail) at a crumbling, yet progressively greener platform. The moss and the overgrowth and the green climbing shrubs, were increasing, rapidly, since the decline of humanity (some sort of plague or massive war had caused this, not 100% sure).
The train emerged, eventually, through a Victorian looking red brick tunnel, to the left of where we were standing on our platform. The crowds waiting to rush onto the delayed train, of near resemblance of the manic platform surges of Dehra Dun, in India.
The train took a while to emerge from the tunnel, and we all became aware of the chanting of the driver and passengers who were already on board that train. Through open windows, the passengers utilised the benefits of the tunnel’s echo, and the intensity added to the chant, achieved through the sheer volume of participating chanters.
This, we somehow all understood, as we waited on that platform, was a new form of common courtesy born out of the circumstance and the ashes; unavoidable challenges of the ‘new world’, for which we had gradually been growing more and more capable to adapt and ‘keep calm and carry on’.
The chant; ‘Body, Body. Body, Body!’ grew sharper and bolder as the train drew near to the end of its censored tunnel. The warning of the boarded passengers, was a disclaimer- since communications in New World were out of action until the foreseeable future. Anyone who might be awaiting the train, and thus looking specifically for the front of it to emerge, needed the advance warning to avert their eyes.
The train had hit a person (suicide or not), and because of the lack of the luxuries previously taken for granted- such as the train been cleaned and cleared of the carcass before continuing its journey-(there was simply not enough people to fill such jobs, nor the time to carry them out, which would delay the trains further). Since everything was only partially able to function, or lost completely, the demand for any available transport for commuters and travellers, far outweighed the capacity to satisfy this void of forewarning.
So, the carcass of a man ‘who had jumped’, remained on the front of the train, smearing the traumatised driver’s window. People were being warned, by the only means possible (chanting to communicate), to avert their eyes and to expect the ghastly sight, thus allowing time for brief mental preparation-so as to avoid the shock and intensified trauma, brought by surprise and the unexpected.
The warning was especially significant to any guardians of children, who were awaiting this train on the platform. An appreciation which was silent and mutual, hummed in the atmosphere, as children were distracted from the sight oncoming. Protective hands moved to veil the children’s eyes, despite confusion and frustration of curiosity stilled.