San Francisco

Cesar Chavez, Cesar Chavez
A man, Mexican American,
a Mexi-man.
Lacy Telles, not Tell-us
Tay-yes, entiende?
Biking down the streets of San Francisco
Crossing Cesar Chavez Street
Not paying attention at first
Until I biked by Cesar Chavez Elementary
Until I got a day off of school
Until I took a picture of the mural
in the Mission District, rainbow eyes
inside the weathered face.
I didn’t know that Cesar Chavez
was a pioneer, a leader, a man
willing to stand

Dear Homeless Man that sits under my work awning,
I gave you a sleeping bag, some snacks, and my friendship for over a year. My co-workers do not believe in your cast and that statement alone bugs me. Ditch the cast if and when you are healed, or don't . . .but promise me you will try to lose the habit. I do not see your wheelchair, Dave, or your cane or your threadbare foot wrap, but I do see your grinding teeth. But, Dave, I also see your eyes and the light that trickles through the cracks.
Thanks for always calling me "pretty lady".

My table is gone and I am sad. It seems such a silly state to be in over a piece of furniture, but I am sad and it doesn't feel silly and that is a fact.
The thing is, I did not have a whole lot of time to sit and reflect over all of the memories stained into the wood. The people, those people from down the hill with their precocious Tasmanian devil of a daughter, came and picked it up earlier than planned and I just did not prepare.

Dolores Park. I moseyed on over this afternoon with a jug of ice water, a big towel, my book, and my iPod. Bikini clad. I found a spot that was half in the shade of an oldtimer tree, and half in the sweltering sunshine. It was on an incline, and I actually thought to myself, “you never lay on the hilly part of the park; let's try it today”. So I did. And I spread my towel out and I flopped on my brown belly, and with a sigh of contentment I opened my novel. Over the Swedish Rock band belting in my ears I heard the strum of an acoustic guitar.

There are all kinds of dancers dancing at the club.
Notice them.
See the two girls in the middle, busting out moves from decades past;
it is impossible not to notice these two. That's the idea, I think.
The smiles enveloping their faces and the bounce in their hair is genuine.
They also genuinely want you to watch them be silly, be loud, be in your face.
But maybe not.
Maybe they just like the setlist and want to thank the dj in his language.

The thing is, people riffle through our trash. Once a week, usually the evening before trash day, one or more persons will pull mishmash out of the bins, looking for the "good stuff". Now, the "good stuff" can be any number of things, and ultimately is dependent on the looter of the week. It varies from bottles and cans, to food leftovers, to even magazines or catalogues. I am accustomed to returning home from a long night, in the darkest of darks, to perilously climb up the steps over polka dots of trash.

Why don't you volunteer?
Why don't you pencil in an hour a week, an hour a month even, to volunteer?
I don't think it is because you don't care.
You care; I think highly of you, often look up to you, so I know you must care.
Part of you anyway.
Laziness. I think even you will admit that is part of it, though no-one actually wants to claim Lazy out loud, and certainly not while others are present. It takes research, and forethought, and EFFORT. Sometimes it seems so daunting. Too much work to exert all that effort.

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