Sin la Casa This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


I do not know your name.
I never asked.
But you have made your mark on mylife forever.

I was on vacation that June,
Visiting my grandparentsin the Sunshine state.
You were sitting outside of Publix that sun-blisteringafternoon,
Probably sweating to death in your tattered greywhite T-shirt andholy
black pants.

I cannot remember if you wore shoes ornot.

I saw you sitting on that bench,
Minding your own business,
When I went into that store.

I hardly glanced at you.

Strollingout of the store with my overflowing grocery cart,
I noticed you.
Inoticed two policemen with you.

I asked an employee what had happened.
He shrugged and told me about the "bum" who had been sitting
on the bench for three days straight.

"Just takin' out thetrash," he sneered.

I gazed at you.
Portly, balding on top and inneed of a shower;
I saw you, a grown man, cry.

I felt your hurt andlonesomeness.

You pleaded with the police to let you stay;
You hadnowhere else to go.

I wanted to say something
Tell them to let youstay -
But my grandparents dragged me along,
Muttering about getting upearly for Disney World in the morning.

I felt nauseous.
I wept foryou.

Sometimes I wonder:
What became of you?
What happened?
Why did I not help you?
Why, oh why, did I not help you?



This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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