From the book Repairs, published in 2017.
the most innocent soul
hit by a bus two minutes ago
You see me
lying on the street
oh dear, so out of place
you don’t break stride
You go on
across the street.
8 thoughts on “Impolite”
I had a very literal response to this poem as it brought back the memory of being knocked flying down an escalator on the London Underground and at least a dozen commuters stepping over me before one older lady helped me up.
Yes. I think that is about the right ratio, in any situation where someone needs help. Maybe one in ten.
Luckily that hasn’t been my experience–when people fall, many other pedestrians always go to their aid, including me. But I know it happens, sadly. (K)
In my experience most people will like the idea of helping but very few will take the steps to go forward and do so. I am thinking not only of obvious things, like a person falling down, but a person needing help or reinforcement in any way (for instance I think of how many times people agreed with me something was bad or wrong or needed change, but when I spoke up, suddenly they were melting away into the mist…) I have learned that the only person I can really rely on is myself. It’s a nice bonus if others do, but I never expect it.
I’m really sorry that’s been your experience. I do agree people can be unreliable, but when I’ve really needed help someone has always stepped up. And though I’m not someone to say that people are generally good, when I think about it, I see people helping people on the street all the time. They balance out the ones who can’t be bothered–they certainly exist as well. (K)
A tragic commentary on society and the lack of empathy!
Yes. I think empathy is something we sure could use a lot more of in this world. Or maybe even just, take a moment to even notice?
Wow that took me back my school days in philly when a homeless person was sleeping in the street and instead of someone getting help, they drove over them
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