I watched a homeless man carefully set out an umbrella on the sidewalk of a lake I saunter around with my Starbuck’s caffè latte each morning.

homeless man with umbrella

At first it didn’t dawn on me what he was up to.

With gentle fingers he twisted and positioned the umbrella just right, angled into the sun.  And then when he shook out his bedroll, I knew.

homeless man with umbrella

I knew that with simple dignity he was drying out his meager possessions from last night’s rain.

I knew the wisdom of the poet – who, in the words of Walt Whitman – “judges not as a judge judges but as the sun falling around a helpless thing.”

I knew, too, that though he may have lice and even mental issues beyond repair, he had enriched my life that morning in ways he will go to his grave not knowing.

lake mirror

🙂 🙂 🙂

8 thoughts on “… the sun, falling around a helpless thing

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