Arts & Entertainment

Through the fence 

A poem written by Lee Butler 

Through the fences, 
I see your hidden tent. 
On my way to work in the early hours, 
When the frigid air clouds tired eyes and bus stops are dimly lit by violet skies, 
The questions of you invade my thoughts:  
Where did you work before…this?  
Do you come up onto the highway to ask for spare change  
Or do you fiddle in Downtown where they sleep on sidewalks?  
By chance, have you held the 7-11 doors for me before? 

“Have a nice day” spray painted next to “Yinzr” and gang tags 
On the concrete beams that encase your home, 
If I may call it so.  
When the wind blows, you taste the polluted rivers and wake to the groans of  
Runners passing by, wearing their Lululemon leggings  
Without an acknowledgment of your existence.  
An occasional police boat disrupts the morning bird’s call. 
The ravishing of water lets you know it is time to duck your head,  
To hide behind the tarps and torn tank tops you hang on old twine and fishing lines.  

In the reflection, you see not yourself but the houses on the other side- 
Did you live in one of those before?   
Are you in there? Sir? Did you survive this winter? 
Perhaps someday I will see you 
Through the fences.  

Photo by Lee Butler

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