I saw a man, today.
I sat, eating a noon meal,
And as I enjoyed my food,
I noticed him.

I watched him cross a busy street.
Oblivious to traffic,
Or the sounds the traffic always makes.
His arms gesticulating, jerking back and forth,
Back and forth,
In a cadence all their own.
Involuntary spasms, I suspect,
Without purpose or warning.
Painful to watch;

And I was sad for that man, as I noticed his torment.

He seemed to be in a conversation,
Although I could not distinguish with whom he conversed,
His head swayed, as if he searched for some imaginary something
On the horizon of this day.

Back and forth. Back and forth moved his head
While his tongue wagged,
And his mouth moved,
And some of his life’s moments ebbed away,
In front of my very eyes.

Moment by sad moment, while I watched it all,
He stood like some marionette whose hands and arms
Were controlled by invisible strings he could not escape.

He walked across a busy street,
Oblivious to traffic,
Or the sounds the traffic always makes.
And as he walked by, he crossed at the intersection of my life, and his.

I was sad for that man, as I watched his torment.

Reflecting back,
I’m fairly certain I saw someone’s brother, today.
Or perhaps someone’s son?
Or friend?
Or some old acquaintance who should ‘never be forgot’?

I was sad, as I watched that man I did not know.
But not sad enough to interrupt my meal,
Or stop my eating.
For a fleeting moment, I wondered if he might be hungry,
But I didn’t wonder enough … to ask him.

4 thoughts on “The Man I Saw Today

  1. You did something precious Ken. You remembered him, and so many like him. Now he will be prayed for. I ask myself the same question when I see our homeless people. Just maybe some of them will be saved due to a whispered prayer.

  2. Oh Ken-I get it!
    I think sometimes when I see these opportunities I default to the Philosophy that I try and do my part, but this is not a good time. …and although Deb and I do give and help it’s mostly been on our terms. I just need to be more flexible and act when called!

    Love reading your thoughts!

    Denny

    1. Denny,
      Thank you for your encouragement, brother. I appreciate you guys very much. I’m working hard on the writing front, hoping to have two books re-published by summer’s end. We’ll see. Bless you,
      Kj

  3. I just read “I saw,a man, today
    It reminded me of a song I used many times in the past.
    The Man On The Street
    There’s a man who is dying and he someone that you know.
    You passed he on the street today and maybe said hello
    But if you only knew the sorrow that he bears you’d tell him that you loved him you’d tell him that you cared.
    But you’re busy – all tied up – you got way to much to do
    You been runnin’ since mornin and your work is never through
    But I wonder what you’d do – if the man on the street were you.

    A haunting song that truly strikes a chord

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