Light's flashing, blue, white, yellow, red.
He lay there on the cold, wet concrete near Pioneer Park as they danced around him and their "crime scene," white rubber gloves alive, yet hesitant in the night.
I wonder if the nameless man will make it, I thought, no notebook, no pencil, rolling the scene in my mind in order to remember.
Someone had bashed his head, many times, it looked to me, against a wall or sidewalk or street.
I've never seen so much vomit from one person. He should have been gurneyed, head turned to the side. They were afraid to touch him! I should say cautious? This man, had he owned real possessions would have been whisked off to a local hospital and placed in a well lighted emergency room.
I heard from some at the corner bookstore that it was over a five dollar bill you know- The United States of America- Federal Reserve Note- In God We Trust.
He appeared the age of a Vietnam Veteran: Tons of yellow-white facial and head hair, a thin Santa figure, and as he lay there, vomiting, probed, bleeding, half-conscious, I wondered if he'd make it and if he would, why?
As "they" pulled him by his shirt to the side of the street he reached out for his lump of belongings. A cop chucked them towards the fellow. Yeah, yeah, here's your stuff. His scrawny long shaking arm reached and pulled towards him, his lump, his baby, precious possessions left of his life.
Vomiting, vomiting, a flashback of the role he may have played on some isolated jungle airstrip where he'd been sent, TDY.
When I came out of the bookstore, everything was gone, no lights, pitch dark, as if nothing had happened and no one had ever been there.
by Trish Schiesser - 01-27-03
Note... TDY: Temporary duty assignment while serving in a service of the USA. This poem dedicated to: S/Sgt. Phillip C. Noland, United States Air Force Security Service, during the Cold War era; Sgt. Whitney R. Schiesser, United States Army; Bosun's Mate Andrea R.(Schiesser)Rose, United States Navy; LT. Robert D. Schiesser, USNR/R/Ret.; Patty E. (Schiesser) Johnstone, United States Army Reserves.