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The Disposable Man

Sitting alone
outside the world,
his mind flickers back
to the laughing
full days,
to the tears
and the work
and the love that he gave;
but
empty now
of the fullness he had
rusted by years
and battered by life
and no longer useful,
he’s pushed aside –
thrown away like an old tin can:
the disposable man.

From his silent corner
his lonely eyes watch
for those he knows
won’t come.
They grew fat
on his fullness
and tall
on his time,
but now
their own frantic fullness fills
their every hour:
the world has no time
for an old empty can –
less still for
the disposable man.

The gray shadows flit
through his grayer days
till night closes in
with welcome release,
and, horror! he’s gone
and the world stops still
while they weep
for their loss
though for years unseen,
and somehow find
sandwiched in between
the hustle of yesterday
and the bustle of tomorrow
a few feet of ground
for an old tin can
and an hour – too late! –
for the disposable man.

Find more poems here.

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