David McLansky

Freshman - 778 Points (5/24/1944 / New York City)

Old Black Man Poem by David McLansky

As I lay helpless on my back
In my own filth, my body wracked
With painful sores on hips and sides,
It's more than a sane man can abide.

The dirty mattress urine stained
I'm too weak-voiced now to complain,
My children steal my government checks,
Plates on the floor, the house a wreck

Exhausted, frail, too weak to rise,
The fallen father, now despised;
My authority mocked and denied,
What more can a man abide?

Had I the strength to rise and stand,
And be myself as I was a man,
I'd chase them out of what was my home,
I'd spit and rage and foul-mouthed foam.

But I was never one to raise a hand,
I tried to make them understand;
I lived with dignity all my life;
Their ingratitude cuts like a knife.

As I lay rigid in my filth,
Soiled, and mocked, and robbed of wealth,
My tears arouse only disdain,
I cry aloud, I cry in vain;

They complain to me that I stink
Televison my only link;
They took the TV from my room
Spraying Febreze amid the gloom.

As I lay sore and paralyzed
With not a hand to help me rise,
Stinking, blind, incontinent,
Too weak of breath to rage and vent.

I pray for death, an invalid,
And question what good I ever did.
My tears are useless but I cry,
Oh Christ on earth, why don't I die!

I lived my life with deep respect
For God and Man, as one imperfect;
Looking each man in the eye,
My sin was pride, my head held high.

I worked and earned an honest wage,
I cursed not God in my rage,
I knelt in Church and daily prayed,
That each day He'd show me the way.

And now I lay by devils taunted,
The lies they tell with which I'm haunted;
I've lost all faith in heartless Man.
God tests me now, I understand.

I lay here now as on a cross
All movement gone, all feeling lost,
My muscles cramped, my body shaken;
Tell me God I'm not forsaken.

Women who I knew from Church
My absence noted, began a search,
Oh the humiliation that I felt
When over me, they bent and knelt!

They wrapped me up, one took me home,
Called Social Services on the phone;
I'm better now, I can sit up in bed;
I've gained some weight, now being fed.

How narrow is the soul of men
How easily they do offend
The laws of God, the laws of men,
While only Mammon they attend

Submitted: Friday, March 07, 2014
Edited: Friday, March 07, 2014

Topic of this poem: love

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.


Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Old Black Man by David McLansky )

There is no comment submitted by members..

Famous Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  3. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  4. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. Caged Bird
    Maya Angelou
  8. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. A Dream Within A Dream
    Edgar Allan Poe
Trending Poets
Trending Poems
  1. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  2. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
  3. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  4. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  5. If, Rudyard Kipling
  6. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  7. Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
  8. Caged Bird, Maya Angelou
  9. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  10. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
[Hata Bildir]