Wednesday, November 08, 2006

I suppose there comes a time
when you're sitting there looking at what's offered,
knowing you have to pick the cheapest thing on the menu.
It's not a matter of what you'd like.
It's not a matter of
"Gee, what would taste good right now?"
When it comes to making
your selection from the menu,
it's not the contents that your eyes are allowed to scan.
Your options
are there on the far right
where the price list is located.
Starting at the top,
your eyes sweep to the bottom,
in search of a price
that matches the assorted change in your pocket.

You come to ignore values that obviously equate to
coffee or orange juice,
for what are those but luxury add-ons?
Value can be summed up
to what on the menu matches
the weight in your pocket and yet
still fills that cavity inside your gut.

What truly amounts to luxury in such a life?
Is it solitude?
Absolute obliterating solitude?
Can there be any more than this?
No. There are other options.
With cavity half empty/half full,
you make your way to the exit,
where a cold wintry embrace awaits you.
Out there, solitude equals death.
An option you may not be ready for yet.

There at the end of the block sits the Open Door Mission.
There again, you will find options.
Options that come with prices.
Prices that have nothing to do with
the weight in your pocket but rather
the weight of your soul.
There at the Mission there are luxuries and essentials.
For you,
the main essential is warmth.
The luxury to have the stillness of one lone area
where you can lie down upon a cot
and pretend you
and your half empty cavity
are still you.
Your spiritual deposit... paid in full.
Yes, the check's in the mail,
though the balance of your faith account
may just bounce.

Until then,
there's the chilly walk from this exit door
to that one in the distance,
and in that interim solitude,
you may come to hope
you won’t be distracted
by all the exit options
beckoning along the way.

©04 Jack Hubbell

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