Concrete Yorkshire Dawn


Each morning

I walk from a car park

through an underpass

and past a man who sleeps

wrapped in blankets

under fluorescent lights

on a cold concrete floor.

Some mornings, I see his hands poking out from beneath the blankets

nails blackened

cracked calloused skin.

Other mornings, I catch a glimpse of his frost-like illuminated face

ruddy hollow cheeks

eyes closed. Always.

I’m invisible to him as I silently slip past.

He thinks he’s invisible to me. And to society too.

But I see him. Even in the darkest dawn.

The tatters and the poverty.

The weary slum of his solitary decades and the impossibleness.

Screwed out of Heaven.

No comrades to walk the road with.

I sometimes want to shout to him what’s buzzing in my head and to tell him that I see him, that he doesn’t escape my view.

I want to tell him that I do think about who he is

that I do think about where he’s come from

that I do think about why he’s lying here, in the crack of the pavement, each morning

that I do see a human being before me.

Instead I keep my mouth shut

and I walk on past

silently saluting him.



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