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A Scene at a Rest Area

A poem about escaping life.

Here I am

In a small town,

In the middle of nowhere.

“Excuse me, ma’am”

I turned around.

A young boy

Holding a tray,

He doesn’t seem to know me—

I realised with joy.

I was simply in his way.

Oh, how I long to be free!

From the gossip

And vicious rumours.

I just want to be me,

If only for this road trip.

Stopping for gas

At a rest area,

A small business centre,

For travellers to rest

Before going further.

It is a place

Filled with anonymity,

To escape for the day.

No double-faced


I don’t want to leave

But I know that I have to.

A rest area is a temporary stop;

Life is full of what-ifs,

We just have to see it through.

I wrote this poem after a conversation with someone about how liberating it is to be anonymous for the day. In our daily lives, each of us has a label attached to us whether it is by relationship ties (mother, son, wife, etc) or a job description (writer, doctor, artist, etc).

Sometimes, life gets too overwhelming and as much as we enjoy the positions and responsibilities in life, there is also the urge to escape for a day or two if given the chance. This is especially true if we are surrounded by gossip, rumours, backstabbing and any other forms of negativity that bring us down.

When travelling alone in an obscure place like a rest area (aka rest stop, motorway service area, service area), we are practically anonymous. This gives us a chance to be whoever we want to be for the day.

Have you thought about how you would live your life if you could be anonymous for the day? 

Recommended12 Simily SnapsPublished in All Stories, Fiction, Poetry, Self-Help


  1. Great poem Tze Lin. Nice piece at the end too.

    This is one of the reasons why I like solo traveling. I feel like I leave behind all the judgements and all past history people have with me. You meet someone new, and they get exactly who you are heart.

  2. Great poem TzeLin! Anonymity would be a great escape for sure, although sometimes it’s nice to be known especially by people who are kind. Great piece!!!