Written not long after I moved to NYC many years ago after witnessing a man singing on the subway.

The Soloist
by Eric L. Woods

The surrounding world sings of pain
While I practice the art of being vain
All around me people become annoyed
Crooners glance they struggle to avoid
The words he sings are foreign to me
But his torment is plain to all that see
Why do people disapprove of his world?
Nasty glance, terse words, snickers hurled
Could it be that he is happier than I?
His conscious free, singing proud to the sky
Who am I, or we, to judge sanity?
Seems that none of us are truly free
Society has taught us to cover despair
While he casts perceived dignity to air
Between tormented words sung out loud
He smiles to his imaginary crowd
I leave him this evening to his song
To condemn his expression would be wrong
Instead I mutter a prayer or two
In hopes blessings granted won’t be few
He will fade gently into my past
Memories of his song will forever last

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