Daily Moments – time alone (Free Verse) March 31 2018

(c) Clr’18

Alone…
are we really?

city streets filled with sweat
winter’s thaw mixed with smog
midnight walkers’ spirits run
stench of liquids giving buzz
panhandlers shouting for extra dough
homeless silent at their corners
minding their own business
a cardboard bed and brown paper cup
their presence never taunt or shout

commuters rushing by to work
no longer notice these city folks
immune to smells and poverty
they hail a cab or take the train
subway stations soon fill fast
people speed to catch their train
sometimes stalled for quite some time
a suffering soul jumped on the tracks
the driver sits, frozen in shock
nightmares of drivers to maim or kill
their job is hell…life’s lost its thrill

nine to fivers are not the same
some rushing home to join their claim
others dawdle and take their time
sometimes spend their very last dime
stretching their dreaded return home
deafening echoes they must postpone
screams of silence await those alone

Alone…
are we really?

the retired man goes out early
no newspaper at his doorstep
he walks up to the newsstand
his next stop at Claudette’s diner
his regular special like every day
his coffee topped off without a say
other patrons join him sometimes
they talk about the good old times
and whine about the government
come afternoon he may go home
to feed his cat and quench the plants
sitting in his comfy chair
the purring is a lullaby
a short nap is well deserved
he may go out or read his book
but when he looks out the window
sun smiles with her alluring look
and so he goes out once again
his cane in hand – not for his legs
but for his safety – one never knows
the dangers on these city streets
it’s busy now, he sees all kinds
he walks along the inner side
even though the sidewalk’s wide
different crowd of night people
barely awake, their pompous stride
hustling for their daily preys
pestering ‘specially the old and meek
most likely need their daily fix
its still too early for nighttime tricks
staggering along the city pavement
a panhandler leans into a man
smooth talking with a crooked smile
menacing and insistent
he blocks pedestrians all the while
the man stops suddenly and lifts his cane
he pleads to be left alone
the hustler laughs and taunts again
until a new prey walks along
he finally leaves this frightened man
an older woman has stopped to watch
the taunting scene, her phone in hand,
her finger on the number 9
and then a sigh of pure relief
when all seems safe, she’s on her way
and as she enters an eatery
she bumps into the same old man
gnarled fingers curled on his cane
she tells him she is so relieved
he’s safe- no longer aggrieved
the man looks down
he was so tall!
his smile shows how he too is pleased
although alone, there’s always
someone around, you see!
there’s people who actually care
even if you live alone

Alone
we are on this path of life
forming tracks of our very own
but when the shadows are well defined
footprints of a sacred divine
one is really never alone.
© Cheryl-Lynn Roberts ‘18/03/31


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