A World's Reflections

She sits on the couch facing a window that reflects the world’s darkness.

The only light a distant block away, shimmers, but brightens nothing.

A lone man sleeps on the curbside perch, praying for a hood to protect his balding head.

The bitter northeast wind chills his bones,

as malnutrition from the brutal streets thin his skin.

The old man of thirty years shivers.

His dry pink skin pealing from the cold.

His muscle atrophied.

Wrinkle by wrinkle his body wages a war with gravity.

The sadness radiates brighter than the porch light down the road.

Yet he lays snoring in the cold,

his pillow, a concrete slab.

Sneaking up closely with the range of a digital camera,

there lies a sign propped on the man’s bag of cans

“I will work for food.”

Emaciated as a bare skeleton

a lone tear drop sits frozen upon his lips.

The woman, cloaked by pink curtains untouched by the cold.

A roof over her head keeping her warm, like all her neighbors,

Except for that one.

Then down the block she sees another exception.

Walk another block and there’s another, and another and another.

The world looking out at a man, a woman, a child and more.

A once vacant sidewalk covered with bodies

that have no home,

but that which can never be taken away.

The massive landscape, a sky.

The mouth of the black hole

has gobbled up that one time college graduate,

a divorced mom of an ailing newborn,

a doctor knocked by hard times,

an actor who could not manage life’s theatre,

and a golden spoon heir who couldn’t deny their family’s lies

now share a block on a Boston road.

No food,

no home,

nor drop of milk

to fill the bodies of unrelated mortals

ages ninety to zero.

Copyright - Michelle May, 2003