Friday, April 18, 2014

Walking to the Beach on 4/14/14

On my way to the beach
There was a man shuffling along the street
I thought he was just some sketchy guy--
There are a lot of those around here
-- wandering teens, drunken stoners, weathered homeless--
Just not "all there"
Coming toward me
Black pants with less-than-useful buckles
Red jacket
Spiky hair-- Sticking up
Not because of any
Obvious use of hair products
But because it was cut that way
Grew that way
I don't know where this guy was going
But he was on his way
Shuffling, eyes mostly closed
Because of the sun in his face
His face-- I thought there was blood on it. Or paint.
A smudge of something...
A smile.
It was a smile. A clown smile.
He turned his head and body slightly,
Perhaps to hide from me
Perhaps to avoid the sun
His face was tan
His eyelids heavy--
Like clowns' eyelids
But the painted smile made this whole affair seem
When I thought I saw blood,
I worried for him
When I saw the painted grin,
I was more worried
But I couldn't quite screw up the courage
To ask him if
He was OK
I couldn't keep looking at him
It seemed he didn't want me looking at him
I wondered if he was unwell
I wondered if he was a performance artist
I wondered if he was an unwell performance artist
I didn't stop to ask
Or watch
Or even glance back
As I passed
I had to get to the water
I needed the terror to subside
At the beach
There was a family playing together
On the shore
A little boy was tossing a florescent green ball
It bobbed upon the foaming tips
Of dying waves
It seemed part of the show

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