Invisible Man by Catharine Johanna Otto

Posted: March 7, 2015 in Poetry
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

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Catharine Johanna Otto
Freelance author
www.loomofdreams.com
 
Hi Dennis,

Thank you for sharing your blog! I enjoyed reading it and I’m glad that you’re having so much success with it. It’s wonderful for the homeless that you’re so generous with the proceeds and they are getting the benefits. I’m grateful also for your generous offer to let me use your blog for promotions. Currently I don’t have a book to promote, but I thought you might be interested in this poem I wrote about the homeless years ago. If you don’t think the message is too strong, I wouldn’t mind if you posted it on your blog.
(I’m adding it as an attachment also.)

 

Invisible Man
by Catharine Otto

Walking along 12th St.
when I was 17,
I saw a man, sitting in the middle
of boxes and boxes of possessions—
No Man’s Land,
yet his only world–
steam almost swallowing him
from the grated iron below.

Suddenly the hideous truth of it all
was freshly exposed to me–
stinging like a newborn’s first wound,
or the shock of birth–
and I shook my head,
wanting to turn it all way,
wanting to run away, wanting to cry.
I ran a few steps in vain,
then slowed down to reality,
my eyes barely dry.

That man could be dead tonight, I thought;
It would be a public execution.

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Comments
    • Thanks for rebloggging my poem, I’m glad you liked it. The plight of the homeless is important and still hurts me as much now to see them as it did when I wax 17.

      Liked by 1 person

      • These days I get very angry at what I am forced to do to my soul every time I have to pass a homeless man or woman with nothing to offer.

        The simple and common sense idea that we can do as a community what we can’t do as individuals is lost on a set of generations who have access to more information than any other set of generations on the planet…I still don’t understand why we prefer to blame Muslims for the decades of rotten political decisions the people of the U.S. have made since ‘Mourning first rose in America in 1980’ –

        The one bright spot is that Obama has increased funding for mental health…but I fear that the greed and stupidity that dominates our national discourse will result in the election of an outright fascist this year.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. That is a very powerful poem the lady wrote Dennis. Very hard hitting and true. Mark

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for appreciating the poem, I’m glad it moved you and spoke to you. In Philadelphia , PA, where I live there, there are a lot of homeless people, and their plight really concerns me. I try to always buy the newspaper the homeless people create, called One Step Away.

      Like

  2. mincs1 says:

    I agree that this is a powerful poem. It’s sad that so many who see the homeless turn the other way. I really appreciate the care and compassion that you demonstrate toward the homeless, Dennis. I have been reading Conversations With the Homeless. You have shown respect for the reality of the lives of the homeless of your experience; that opens my eyes to their reality, too. It is a beautiful gift.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for showing your appreciation for my poem, In Philadelphia, PA, where I live, there is a newspaper written and printed by the homeless called One Step Away, and it’s sold on the street corners by homeless people themselves. Part of the proceeds of every paper goes to the seller, so he or she can save up for a home. I try to buy this newspaper whenever I can.
      I agree, Dennis does have a wonderful gift, and I thank him for letting me post this.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hi Catharine, thank you for supporting the homeless. Many large cities have newspapers written and printed by the homeless, unfortunately, mine is not one of them. I think it is a great idea.

        Thank you for your kind words. ~ Dennis

        Liked by 2 people

      • mincs1 says:

        I have seen that same concept in other cities, too, and try to support the sellers whenever I can. I have a son who suffers from addiction and is on and off the streets so this topic of homeless people is near and dear to my heart.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m so sorry about your son, I hope he improves. I had a brother who was homeless for a short time due to problems he was having with mental disorders. He passed away,though he didn’t die on the streets. I know how it feels to watch a relative fall and not be able to pick them up.

        Liked by 1 person

      • mincs1 says:

        Thank you for your kind words. I have been away and just returning to wordpress now. It’s nice to have contact with people who understand.

        Like

  3. Nicodemas says:

    Thank you for sharing this. Powerful words.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. swamiyesudas says:

    Reblogged this on lovehappinessandpeace and commented:
    A Real Public Execution. An Execution BY the Public. Unfortunately, this happens Thousands of Times a Day. And it is Preventable.

    An Excellent Poem. In the Blog of an Excellent Man, Dennis.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. worzelodd says:

    Yesterday morning, early, dark, cold, a woman at the bus stop was asking for a quarter for the bus- I watched her ask at least 30 people, all seemingly headed for work, every one coldly ignoring her, not even shaking heads no. What kind of world is this- she was asking for 25 cents, it is not my place to judge what she spent my quarter on. This happens a lot hear. Gob smacks me how easliy I could become her.

    Like

  6. Reblogged this on Loom of Dreams and commented:
    This features my poem about the homeless, Invisible Man.

    Like

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