To the Man Who Died on my Front Porch

To the man who died on my front porch;

Be it through vanity or the simple desire to believe that something mattered,
I believe most want some art left of them.
Something to show their presence left foot steps or craters.
And so I will write one for you:

I hope you are missed, that you are mourned.

That someone cared for you more than the world that allowed this to happen, and that your passing ruined their day far more than it did ours.

I’m so sorry for getting caught in that world.
for not doing enough to hang a roof over your head that might have felt more permanent,
Or to keep you warmer than the snake bites to your veins.

If you were of faith;
I pray that you were right with it
That you were wrapped in contentment and the peace of where you were going eclipsed the cold you left behind. That paradise waited, and welcomed you home in a prodigal embrace.

I hope the relaxed look on your face was genuine;
Not a mask forced by the black tar poison as you leaned against our drywall.
That the amber glow of our porch light brought you the comfort of the sun.

We wish we were home,
that we might have heard you slump in time to make a call.
To do something, anything to create a view of you that’s more than a corpse at our door;
a story we’ll only ever see the end of.

I hope we can do better;
That those responsible will feel the sting of regret or revenge and at this point I don’t know which is the answer,
because we lost the chance to make it right when your justice fled your lungs.
Pushed on your breath as your chilled ghost hung alone yet visible on the air.

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