he looked out from old eyes and a knit cap
in 95 degree humidity, in downtown Austin
standing on the median with his cardboard sign
a simple message to cars passing by ... "need help"
and i was on my way to the vet to pick up the family dog
found so many years ago,
in the middle of another road and another life...
and it was going to be a hefty bill this time.
$398 for an ear infection and overdue vaccination.
so, how much for the man?
all i had was a twenty and change.
it seemed unfair, but he wouldn't know
that i would be paying more for the dog,
and i handed it to him out the window.
it was easier than holding on to the anger at reagan
for all of those he turned out on the street
in the 80's... the ones who can't hold a job
and can't afford to be poor and bipolar
all at the same time.
out on the street
we are all just people.
and we have to take care of each other.
because what else is there?