Daily Archives: August 2, 2017

His Wallet

A bald brown man
is out on the curb with a black
trash bag of a kind disallowed 
by my city carefully picking through
our building’s recyclable bins
for cans and bottles, almost tenderly
placing those he cannot use
to one side on the pavement before 
adding to his bag with what little
he gets from us and then
putting the ones on the pavement
back into the bins, although
I cannot be sure
he puts them back into the ones
they came from they all go back
into the bins where they belong
without ever touching the yellow bags
the city makes us use for trash

and then he straightens up and 
moves on, up the hill, up the street
to the next three decker, then the next;
then he crosses over and descends
doing the same on the other side 
where I see him one more time, 
directly across from my window, 
picking through the plentiful options
from the green building’s bins,
and I note as an afterthought that
he’s new, not one of the usual crew
who come through on Wednesdays
or Thursdays if Monday was a holiday;
he’s younger, fitter, more neatly dressed,
stands up straighter, looks like he can carry
more weight as the bad black bag the city
won’t let us use for trash is full now
and he is tying it off and pulling
another one
from his back pocket
where you’d expect
a man
to carry
his wallet.