John M. Kenny

The Man on the Bench

Rusty, old and withered
Wooden boards were missing
The pigeons gathered around

The man, old and gray
Lying like a statue
Emerged from his sleep.

Early in the morning, the sun rose
A cool warmth brushed through the walk.

His clothes were aged
Bleached from the sunlight
Wrinkled like a raisin
Hair matted down
By countless years of disregard.

He wore a set of ancient,
Tie-dyed Converses
At least two sizes to small
His big toe had torn the tip of the shoe.

He had let himself leave reality
And live day by day,
Second by second.

He had no worries
Spending his nights in the park
And his days roaming the city.


Copyright © 2002-2010 Student Publishing Program (SPP). Poetry and prose © 2002-2010 by individual authors. Reprinted with permission.