To the One-Legged
in the Pouring Rain
When I passed you on my way home
I didn't think about you
nor feel a hairsbreath of sympathy.
I was talking about someone at work,
how she'd pissed me off in an email.
"She's so curt," I think I said.
I wasn't until hours later
while looking at the sky,
a sky whose size unsteadied me,
that I started thinking of you,
and others like you...
all the human beings on this planet
the hundreds, thousands, millions...
How incomprehensible, I thought,
standing there on my covered porch
while you stood on one leg
on a traffic median,
hungry and homeless
in a ruined side of Baltimore
in the pouring rain.