The Man in Red

Sometimes I play of game of who I want to be
and I look around at the people I see.
Driving downtown today I saw three
options to consider as potential me’s.

There was a tallish man whose ebony skin
gleamed in his dark red shirt and shoes,
his arms straight and stretching outwards from the ground,
raising his palms to the sky as he sang along to a tune only he heard,
his smile as wide as his unlined forehead.
I wish I were sometimes him, I thought,
as carefree as could be,
singing and celebrating along the sidewalk
on this glorious fall day,
but I worry too much about what people think of me.

The second possible me was a pale man
whose slightly scruffy beard
was barely visible between his mirrored shades
and over-sized sun hat, which was pulled down snugly
lest a sudden gust of wind seize it from him,
his body was armored from the fall sun as well,
covered dually by his windbreaker and hiking clothes,
dressed for success in crossing this urban jungle,
tied too tight to enjoy the weather at all.
That is sometimes me, I realized sadly.

Thirdly, there were two well-dressed men
sans business jackets, and likely on a personal date,
not a working date, based on their body language,
studying the upgraded downtown parking meter
with the same perplexed look I always give it,
there was only one small car in the parking area,
so they weren’t trying to remember which parking slot to enter,
just how to work the darn machine.
That is so me, I thought, laughing silently.

As I drove away from downtown,
I wished I were the man in red,
dancing and singing my way down the street.
So, I rolled my windows down,
threw caution to the wind,
and sang my heart out to the radio.
Thank you, man in red.


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