Facing His Fear

Image found at http://www.artofmanliness.com/2009/09/10/how-to-be-a-hobo/

I subscribe to AdviceToWriters, which emails me a quote every day. Here’s today’s:

If you want to write, you can. Fear stops most people from writing, not lack of talent, whatever that is. Who am I? What right have I to speak? Who will listen to me if I do? You’re a human being, with a unique story to tell, and you have every right. If you speak with passion, many of us will listen. We need stories to live, all of us. We live by story. Yours enlarges the circle. Richard Rhodes


I’m not sure what this has to do with “hobo” which is the prompt for today’s poem (see my other April 2014 posts for more information). But here’s what I did with it:

What good is fear to to them?
They wake in the dark to cold thicker
than their coats. A tin drum
of fire, safety in numbers, honor
among thieves. They are not thieves.
The road sings a song that is wild,
pure as the foot of a honeybee,
but the road confers no pension,
no medical plan, no paid vacation.
If you envy them, don’t  think that it’s all
vacation (no to-do list,
no itinerary, no meetings),
envy their sky of cherry blossoms,
bed of straw and feedsacks,
smoke of old trains skeining
into blue distance, clack of empty freight cars
a disillusioned Morse code:
this is the dream wrapped
in a promise that things can always get worse,
that around the next bend,
a meadow of bluebells waits.

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