2017/08/02

Purple Lady

Big City
Busy Street
People catching buses

Sit down
Wait for bus
Next to purple lady

Busy busy
Coming and going
Lady unmoving, staring

Odd smell
Is it me?
Hope not

There again
This time stronger
Sweet but unclean

Purple lady
hands unsettled
Mumbles under breath

I look at her

I look

I notice

Short hair once highlighted
Clothes seem neat
Like for travelling
She wears a zipped up purple jacket
Neat and tidy over black pants
Cowboy boots underneath

Clean complexion
In her 30’s
Rather pretty except

Staring vacantly
Waiting for the night
Alone and withdrawn

She is not catching a bus

Should I offer to help?

Last few times
I received fear and anger
I hesitate

Bus arrives and I am whisked away.



A few days later
Walking in the crowd
Face marked with dirt and a white smear

Clothes are the same but
Dirty and unkempt
Greywhite t-shirt hanging out raggedly

The days have been unkind

She is washed away
River of people
Lost in the crowd.

I am filled with sadness, loss, and feel ashamed.


Kim Robertson (Queensland)
First published on the author's blog


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