man

man stands hands thrust in pockets
collar turned against the rain
that falls so slow through cold sharp air
to bead so silvery upon his coat that keeps him in.
He scuffs a sole to trace his line
through muddied moisture spread sheeted by the platform edge.
Two lovers trot smiling in his direction, hands enjoined
toward the dry space under the bridge for refuge;
stop short.
They cannot pass.
Light from locked glass waiting room falls on his face,
there’s no mistaking sheen on his cheeks for simple weather;
the eyes have it, that look of keening sorrow;
he cries.
Their smiles fade in sympathy
to adopt embarrassment like a cloak
to shield him from their sight, heads bowed
slowly proceed to skirt around
the expanding pentagram of grief that sits invisible
to those without a soul.
Now of course they see the empty circle of space on him,
and orbiting are those who cannot look.
A girl furiously stares at her phone, brow furrowed.
And more, perhaps a dozen, silent,
seeing but not watching,
fascinated but…not.
Except for one (there’s always one),
this old woman
cling filmed head and chunky shoes, thick brown tights,
well, she stares of course. She, stares. In wonder.
There is nothing to say.
And I wish the ground would suck me down,
away from their discomfortable agitation,
to give respite, give back this space to cluster in,
their sighs of relief
echoing around me as I fade
dark into the night.

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