A Vagabond's Lullaby

June 4, 2008
By Alex Alpert, Portland, OR

The man walks the short path to his small camp he set up under the interstate bridge. Flies linger around him, the first sign he hasn't expierenced running water for awhile. His tired eyes scan his camp: a small blanket, a fire pit, a few boxes of things he's collected. He's never had much anyway. The sun has almost set, and his stomach is letting him know he hasn't eaten today. He sets up a fire before the daylight completely kisses the sky goodbye. He runs his hand through his greasy hair and opens a can of tomato soup. His least favorite, but it's all he has left. His job of standing on the street corner with a sign - 'Will work for food' hasn't been paying well lately. Nobody will even give him a chance. He eats, but not greedily, appreciative that he had one meal today. As he lays on his flatened cardboard box to sleep, pulling his ratty blanket over himself, the sound of passing cars overhead are his lullaby.

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