The men sit, silently, on the curb of a forgotten gas station. They are similar in demeanor - they take ball caps off their heads, wipe the sweat, sweep the hat back on. The hat has seen many miles, and you assume the same is true of the men.
What can we know of them? They are us and we are them, but for different circumstances, tragedies, victories, and luck. We sweat under the same sun, but some of us don't sweat enough. Many sweat more than their share.
Cars and trucks and motorcycles pass, belching carcinogenic cacophony - the men breathe it in. These are men used to inhaling dangerous things. What is cancer in fifteen years when there are mouths to feed tonight?
The men guard their money fiercely. They have gone to battle for it. Their backs ache and their fingers clench. They do not smile. They know they must remain shadows. It is what got them here.
It is a poorly scripted movie that plays forever in the cheap theater that used to be a porn shack. We never learn. We take advantage and have the nerve to bite the hand that feeds us.
The men are to be respected. The reasons they are disrespected are numerous and silly, you can fix that. You can try. You can get the ball rolling.
The men leave when it gets dark. They leave slowly, like they are attached to the curb by invisible, elasticized bands. They hope for that last minute redemption. It rarely comes. Generally, the men go home and sleep. They need to be waiting before the sun comes up.
The grind of the working poor.ReplyDelete
It is something I will never get used to seeing. It amazes me how many pass by, eyes averted, blind.Delete
Life's not all candy bars and lollipops. The truth is gritty and real for people like this, despite what the media decides to tell us.ReplyDelete
Yes, indeed. The media sugarcoats many things. I'm aiming to rinse the sugar off.Delete
JD, you've captured the essence of these men and their life stories. Subtly and powerfully.ReplyDelete
Thank you, Jo. Much obliged. :)Delete