Art & Poetry

Home Sweet Home Again

Project Description

The Man Is Missing | Bonnie Fisher

From the corner just after I leave the freeway,
the old drunk with the tattered sign:

WILL WORK FOR FOOD

I’ve never seen anyone give him work or food.
Most look away as if by not looking
they can make him disappear.

Once someone jumped from a car and chased him off.
Like most
I look in the other direction

although I think of bringing him food,
or of picking him up and bringing him home
to fix a few things around my house,
then paying him well.

I know it’s simply money he wants,
not work, not food.

I think of bringing him money.
I rehearse how I’ll lower the car window
and thrust a 20 in his direction.

“I wish you well,” I’ll say
or I’ll say nothing at all.

I wonder where he’s gone:

to the hospital,
to jail,
to stay with a rich son?

Maybe he’s dead.

What will I do now that he is gone?

Upon whom will I pin my fantasies of
helping the world in some small way
now that the man on the corner is gone?