Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Angels At Work

I try to keep my blog family-safe. But this poem does contain an obscenity: it seemed appropriate. You can read the whole thing here.

A homeless man was sitting on the curb,
with half a loaf of bread in trembling hands.
You know the kind—he seemed a bit disturbed—

and passers-by with eyes averted and
their hands in pockets, strolled all unconcerned.
Indifference is easier to stand

than pity—so the city-dweller learns.
The broken breadcrumbs fell into the street
and distant pigeons heard them fall, and turned

their heads. They gathered at his feet.
As more and more arrived, with hungry eyes
and razor beaks, all wanting bread to eat

he, overwhelmed, as if he tried to fly
waved ragged arms around his stinking head
and, inarticulate, let out a cry.

Relentless pigeons pecked away his bread—
just half a loaf—worth maybe half a buck—
drew blood from shaking hands and tangled head—

he crumpled helpless, sobbing, shouting “Fuck!
Please help me. Help. Just help. I need, I need—“
—And then a bolt of feathered lightning struck.

The pigeons scatter, put on their best speed,
too late for one. The hawk now soars away,
and in his claws, a captive pigeon bleeds.
I think I saw an angel work today.


Linda Jacobs said...

Oh, wow, I could see this happening and I was holding my breath.

That last line just glows!

Richard said...

The Angel of Death?

Sweet Talking Guy.. said...

Excellent! great little story, nicely told.