Invisible Man

I had stopped for a treat on that downtown street
Heading back to the wall for a quiet retreat
About to enjoy my first food of the day
I was startled by a man blocking my way
He stood in the shadows, this invisible man
Sharing this space was not part of his plan
My furtive glance was met with a stare
That pierced my soul, for there was such despair

His skin was so dirty, like an old piece of leather
From constant exposure to all types of weather
Every outfit he owned was layered on his back
His worldly belongings in a worn gunny sack
Black curls were matted, never seeing a comb
The least of his worries when he has no home
Some food, some warmth, where to spend the night
Fearing the dark, dreading the light
What was his story, what brought him here
Untreated mental illness or too much beer
Passersby do not see him, this invisible man
They look straight ahead, walking fast as they can
Are we really so busy we've forgotten to care
We walk by this misery as though it weren't there
I can't imagine how empty his life must be
With no hope in the future for him to see
There must be a way to get this problem solved
To touch people's hearts so they'll get involved
A nation so rich should feel nothing but shame
These folks are our citizens and each has a name

Diane Davis, Copyright 2004
Used With Permissoin
Contact the Author for Permission to Reprint or Use