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The Other Side of the Tracks

They laughed at him;
the staggering old man
wearing the stench of life
struggling to drag his
overflowing suitcase
to the other side of the street.

He bellowed
a loud grunt of frustration
as he gave a hard jerk to
dislodge his suitcase
from the death grip
of the tracks.

As we crossed paths
I didn’t laugh,
make eye contact,
look up,
nor verbally acknowledge
his existence
out of fear it would expose
my own issues that
I drag like shackles.

But I did ponder…

“How does anyone ever move forward,
carrying so much of yesterday’s baggage?”