Poetry offering from Richard Swartz



A man from a distance gave me a start 
with his hair too long and his hat too large 
He came up close and I was forced to meet 
My disdain I covered long enough to greet 
Soon I discovered it was a bald crown 
the effect of his fight against cancer 
He hid it from others afraid they would judge 
my mask had some makeup beginning to smudge 
A woman from a distance gave me a start 
a little too skinny but at least not too large 
To share electricity I lingered a glance 
To my casual delight, she shifted her stance 
Purely synchronistic, I saw her again 
Completely forgotten it returned from the haze 
Set for a laugh and a joke to watch Springer 
to learn that the think down her throat was her finger 
Free from public's wrath, out of the view 
Still I knew I could not escape blame 
My mistakes hurting others 
feeling dirty I bathe 
knowing their shame was really my shame.