Charles Tiffin Clegg

Rookie (lost in antiquity / California)

Love In The Cold.. A True Story - Poem by Charles Tiffin Clegg

Nancy called out that cold and rainy night
It was clear her drinking slurred her words
But she still communicated her lonely scary plight
She wanted to be held and warmed in the frozen air
Her heating had gone out and water poured inside

So he and I came over to number 108
To knocking, knocking, knocking, silence only came
Outside two caring men were left in the freezing wnd
It was dark and quiet but she was there we knew
Her safety was in question and her fear was in the air

Two worried men said ' Help is here, please let us come in '
Mysteriously a light went off that had been very dim
Outside in shaking cold we said must come in
If not the law would come and protecting break the door
There was a tension from within then the door lock clicked

There she was with reddish hair a child of fifty four
She wore from head to toe a padded hunters suit
And over that a coat, some lights were jerry rigged
She said she was ashamed and simply was a mess
That was all she talked about, her shame exploding everywhere

One man had a propane heater several miles away
He left to get it for her place which needed warmer air
He left, she rose moved into the others arms and lap
Her cheeks met his all touching, but not a woman giving love
A very desperate little girl, clinging everywhere with insecurity and fear

She said no one knows how lonely she must live, hates when she is needing
And even more for stressing was putting putting others out
She was a baby at the breast , cold and needing touch and milk
The breast was there, the nipple out, but sucking was not happening
For she had been rejected, felt humiliating shame that cold and rainy night

Her bedroom was a moldy cell, penicillin might be there
Her bed was useless, soaking wet with plastic failing to protect
She lived upon a makeshift couch in an alcove near the door
She was a gopher digging in a hole in blankets a burrow from the cold
Layer after layer blankets in a pile her warmly drunken mind a tangle just like them

She clung and hugged so nicely the giver felt assured
The heater back and working but she could not keep it fueled
Inebriation blocked her function but she said ' I'm not a guy you know '
Now gender was the reason she would suffer in the cold
And one thing was for sure she pridefully refused to go into our homes

The other man now hugging we provided warmth in shifts
Finally in bed and layered to the hilt, some final hugging, she was warm
Electric blankets humming it was time the men would go
The next day she was mad, that silly heater failed. truth is she could not make it work
In the days that followed one man drove her places, drinking now was out

Great Christmas Eve for life and love, Santa came in pairs.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, December 17, 2009

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