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A Present Past

Sitting in meditation, I fell into a memory

A Dickensian moment that felt so real

It is an English eighteenth century setting

A dark, dirty coloring on everything


I’m a scrawny, small child, maybe about eight

Standing in a line with many other boys

My stomach is so empty, a bowl in my hand

Watching the porridge being served ahead of me

Feeling hungry, alone, knowing my orphaned status

The man serving is filthy, toothless, and vile

Cursing each of us as he ladles out our ration

Just before I am served, he spits into the pot


I don’t care, I’m hungry

I need my portion of this tasteless paste

Another dirty handed man tears off a small piece of bread

The oily smudge marks do not matter to me


I feel the heaviness of being so alone

In a cruel world, in a hopeless time

Knowing the destitution of a crushed spirit

That lingering death while my heart still beats


The sadness lingers as I return to presence

I know this scenario is still being played out

In to many places in this world today

Writing this, wondering why I was given

This glimpse of a very present past




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