the man

I knew this man
skin like worn leather
lived in a ravine by the high school,
sleeping underneath the yellow
of a patchwork quilt
smelling like nicotine and filth.

He still is,
to this day
brilliant

I met him when I was 15
he'd hang around off campus
pan handling with a Campbell's soup can.
When one day he sat right next to me and said
"If no one remembers me after I am dead,
would I ever even have existed?"
We use to sit there on that concrete ledge
near the chain link fences
and contemplate all the philosophical truths,
my parents had tried so hard to shield from me.
But the man for all his knowledge,
I realized,
was seeking after what all humans seek after.
Immortality.
The man who lived in a ravine
was able to accept
the awaiting embrace of death
but he could not accept
the idea that once gone,
he would be forgotten.
The man who had introduced me
to all the truth seekers
had never himself been introduced to God.

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