Pious man, smeared forehead,
Vermilion hue, tad bit darker than red,
Erect deportment, walks straight,
Keeps to his time, does not want to be late,
No distractions, disturbances of any kind,
Intellectual, erudite, brightest of minds,
Hands secure delectable variety, for him,
Food nearly spilling over, up to the brim,
Ahead lies a vagrant, old and shriveling,
Veins showing through his body, quivering,
Eyes deprived of bliss,
The sight seems amiss,
Emaciated, nearly crippled, hands folded,
In prayer, like a naughty boy being scolded,
Ribs feeble, protruding grotesquely from beneath the skin,
The unfair road of life, did he commit a sin?
Eyes fixed on the religious man, implore,
For alms, his hair hoar,
But no one cared,
Nay, instead they were scared,
Of the ghastly beggar, on the floor,
Who only seemed to want more?
Greedy! The pious man pronounced him to be,
“Oh, the others may be fooled but I can see!
That he begs, for he is lazy, he does not want to work!
And so like a ghost he will lurk,
On this street till some fool takes pity,
Falls into his trap, perhaps someone from the city,
But, I won’t donate one grain,
For I am sane,
After all, this…beggar will make the food unholy,
With his unconsecrated touch, Golly!
How awful it would be to have him eat this meal,
That, my dear wife prepared with zeal,
And which I’m about to offer to the almighty himself, the lord,
Who by his kind grace has bless’d my family and I, Oh lord,
The least I can do is place at your feet,
Clean, healthy offerings, nice and neat,”
Pious man walks by, furrowed brows, scowl,
at the begging man, his only possession – a grimy cowl,
“Get up! And off with you, I don’t want to see you
Anywhere near here again, or I’ll sue you,”
Dignity mixed in the mud, the beggar scampers away,
Without any words, he has no say,
Just those unforgettable pleading eyes,
That will taunt you for the rest of your lives,
Pious man reaches the temple, food in his hands,
At his feet lies sand,
Caking his toes,
His bows low,
Places his offering at the lord’s feet,
Says a prayer that sounds very sweet,
Lifts his head, clean shaven,
“My lord! You are the maven!”
Head bowed in veneration, seeks,
A blessing, but oh dear something reeks,
“Unholy”…so ironic isn’t it?
Don’t you feel it just a bit?
The food that couldn’t satisfy a ravenous, dying vagrant,
The food not given to him, that deed is flagrant.
Serve as many ostentatious presents as you may please,
But you will be regarded as a fallen man, on his knees,
How oh erudite, greatest of them minds,
Will you satisfy, him, the superior kind?