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Passions in Poetry

Third Street Promenade

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Michael
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Member Ascendant
since 08-13-99
Posts 6333
California


0 posted 09-29-1999 12:33 PM       View Profile for Michael   Email Michael   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to Submit your Poem to Passions  View IP for Michael

THIRD STREET PROMENADE

I went for a walk along the ocean,
Thought the scenery might do me good.
Cold reality changed my perception
Of a once beautiful neighborhood.
I saw chessboards with losers on both sides
Betting street drugs against foodstamps.
The walkway littered with empty bottles,
Walls with graffiti, broken streetlamps.

Knocked over trash cans, rummaging bums,
Teenagers proudly brandishing knives.
Alcoholics begging for spare change.
Pretty women prostituting their lives.
I saw a busboy beating on a vagrant
For trying to eat someone's leftover food.
Only to promptly throw it away
With a "Holier than Thou" attitude.

Saddened, I walked back towards my hotel.
But before I got there, against the wall,
I saw him sitting dark and silent.
I saw a man who lost it all.
His eyes stared off into nothingness.
His face, the visage of despair.
He never moved, nor made a sound,
I'm not even sure he knew I was there.

An army jacket, camouflage pants.
The dog tags told me this man had served.
Only to be forsaken and forgotten,
Coming home to a life so undeserved.
I offered money, I offered food,
The man never lifted an eye.
I couldn't give him what he needed,
I couldn't give him a reason "Why?"

Spray-painted on the wall above him,
The words "Love thy neighbor" boldly displayed -
The forgotten values of a society,
Lost in class levels by which friends are weighed.
Late that night, I went back to find him.
But in the distance hearing trumpets fade.
I realized Peace gave him his answer
In the cheerless Third Street Promenade.

I stopped a moment to count my blessings,
Looking out to the stars above me.
In noticing my less fortunate brothers,
I wondered what they must be thinking of me.
For the first time I saw how their eyes shined
With emotion only a God-given soul contrives.
And I realized it's people, not scenery,
That bring true beauty to our lives.

------------------
Michael Anderson

May Darkness find you all through the day.


© Copyright 1999 Michael Anderson - All Rights Reserved
suthern
Deputy Moderator 1 TourDeputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Seraphic
since 07-29-99
Posts 20770
on the threshold of a dream


1 posted 09-29-1999 12:40 PM       View Profile for suthern   Email suthern   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for suthern

At first, I thought you were walking down the street where I live... but our ocean is miles away... *S* Great poem, Michael (not that you write any other kind! LOL)... the last two lines are especially wise!
U K Hero
Member
since 08-08-99
Posts 271
England


2 posted 09-29-1999 12:52 PM       View Profile for U K Hero   Email U K Hero   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for U K Hero

Well, what can I say except "BRILLIANT"
hoot_owl_rn
Member Patricius
since 07-05-99
Posts 11105
Glen Hope, PA USA


3 posted 09-29-1999 08:57 PM       View Profile for hoot_owl_rn   Email hoot_owl_rn   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit hoot_owl_rn's Home Page   View IP for hoot_owl_rn

Well stated...and I have come to know some very beautiful people here

------------------
It is better to be silent and be considered a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt.
DreamEvil
Member Elite
since 06-22-99
Posts 2442


4 posted 09-29-1999 08:58 PM       View Profile for DreamEvil   Email DreamEvil   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit DreamEvil's Home Page   View IP for DreamEvil

Poignant observation and revelation to this Michael.

------------------
Now and forever my heart hears ~one voice~.
DreamEvilŠ

Denise
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Member Seraphic
since 08-22-99
Posts 23002


5 posted 09-29-1999 09:04 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Amen!

------------------
Denise
caroline
Senior Member
since 08-16-99
Posts 1251
http://members.xoom.com/bellad


6 posted 09-29-1999 09:06 PM       View Profile for caroline   Email caroline   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for caroline

written with insight and passion, Michael. Wonderful, this is.
Michael
Moderator
Member Ascendant
since 08-13-99
Posts 6333
California


7 posted 09-30-1999 04:09 AM       View Profile for Michael   Email Michael   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Michael

Well, thank you everyone. I'm glad you were able to tolerate a piece of this length. And yes, suthern, the last two lines could stand alone, couldn't they.

------------------
Michael Anderson

May Darkness find you all through the day.


Pufalove
Member
since 08-18-99
Posts 120
Houston, Tx. USA


8 posted 09-30-1999 04:26 AM       View Profile for Pufalove   Email Pufalove   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Pufalove

I really LIKED this one. It should be posted in the "open world", not just the open forum.
Dragoness
Senior Member
since 08-07-99
Posts 525


9 posted 09-30-1999 07:24 AM       View Profile for Dragoness   Email Dragoness   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Dragoness's Home Page   View IP for Dragoness

Nicely done and so true.Thank-You for this one.

------------------
Set you heart free and your mind will follow.
Sunshine
Administrator
Member Caelestus
since 06-25-99
Posts 67715
Listening to every heart


10 posted 10-01-1999 02:18 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Well done, Michael!...
Pepper
Member Elite
since 08-19-99
Posts 3134
Southern Florida

Official Passions Reader
11 posted 10-01-1999 03:42 PM       View Profile for Pepper   Email Pepper   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Pepper

brilliant indeed Michael.....I can never get enough of your works.........

------------------

May your days be filled with lots of sunshine and your nights lit up by golden moonbeams
PhaerieChild
Senior Member
since 08-30-99
Posts 1829
Aloha, Oregon


12 posted 10-01-1999 03:46 PM       View Profile for PhaerieChild   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for PhaerieChild

Sometimes you write things so haunting in their starkness and it makes me cry. This is one such example. Excellent!

------------------
If you love me like music, I'll be your song.
~Heart~ Dreamboat Annie

poetFemmeFatale
Member Elite
since 07-25-99
Posts 2961
Arkansas


13 posted 10-20-1999 12:22 AM       View Profile for poetFemmeFatale   Email poetFemmeFatale   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for poetFemmeFatale

Yet another masterpiece of your talent that slipped past me....(sigh) Man, you kept your pen busy while I was away.....(sigh) Printer still smoking.....LOL

------------------
I beckon you to come...I lure you with my tongue... - poet FemmeFatale

JennyLee
Senior Member
since 09-01-99
Posts 1478
Northwestern, NJ.


14 posted 10-22-1999 06:22 PM       View Profile for JennyLee   Email JennyLee   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JennyLee

Bravo! So glad this didn't slip by me. The
"light" suits thee well!!


Jenny
 
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