No one would

A homeless man in front of the coffee shop door

Talking to himself

Laughing, then nearly crying

I wonder who he is talking to

His zip-up jacket hangs off his left shoulder

His beard and hair unkempt and long.


People breeze past him on their way

to get coffee and start their day

Avoiding eye contact with the crazy man

The lost man, the wayward stranger

Afraid of engaging or

recognizing something in his eyes

Afraid of his humanity.


What made him this way?

He was a baby once

An infant in his mother's arms

How did her baby end up here?

The lost man on the street

Blocking the door to the start of my morning.


Fear and annoyance first in my heart

Then pity for him and

anger at the system that