The clang of a single coin in an empty tin
Alerts the man to sadly look down.
He fishes out the nickel
Holding it up to the light
Dreaming of what it must feel like
To have enough to spend well into the night.
The gazes of business men walking by
Causes the man to look around.
He turns his head to stare
Giving thanks to those who pay
Wondering about what it must feel like
To be them for just a day.
The horns of the taxis in traffic
Catches the man’s attention
He peers cautiously at the passengers
Nodding occasionally at regular commuters in a seat
Speculating on what it must feel like
To be taken somewhere by something other than feet.
The haze of the smog overhead
Leads the man to gaze upward
He sadly smiles at the gray of the morning
Watching as the smoke drifts lazily
Knowing that even the pollute of the sky
Is freer than he would ever be.
The shouts of children running by
Encourages the man to spare a glance
He slowly waves at these regular visitors
Wishing them a good day at school
Hoping they lead better lives
Than he who never followed a rule.
The barks of stray dogs
Inspires the man to take some food
He hands out the scraps
The very last of his stash
Desiring they keep themselves alive
Even when he needed the food more than cash
The flying pages of a newspaper
Prompts the man to pick it up
He opens up yesterday’s news
Reading his fill of unfortunate events
Reminding himself of those
Much worse off than him stuck pleading for cents.
The sight of others like himself
Persuades the man to ignore his hunger
He looks out at the others
Absorbing their tear-stained faces becoming wetter
Empathizing with their thoughts
In hopes that things will get better.