Compassion Poem

Poem About A Homeless Man

I wrote this about a homeless man I used to see on my way to work every day. I later found out more about who he was from people in the neighborhood who knew him before he fell on hard times. It was a very sad tale and made me realize we should be careful how we judge others.

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The Lost Soul

Patricia A Fleming © more by Patricia A Fleming

Published by Family Friend Poems October 2019 with permission of the Author.

Seven AM and I sat at the light,
Watching the train chugging by.
A day like the rest, on the way to my job,
Just routine with no feeling inside.

The morning was frigid and snowy,
Just thinking how cold he must be.
But there I could see him wrapped up on the stoop,
In that blanket he found on the street.

That cold, concrete stoop, at that old, empty store,
The place that for years he called home.
He sat there each day, never meeting your eyes,
Just contented to be left alone.

The weeds by the tracks were his bathroom,
His food was a bottle of wine.
His clothes were all dirty and tattered.
He was drunk or passed out all the time.

To see him you'd think he was no one.
He was barely a man anymore.
A failure to the ones who once loved him,
And a burden to the rest of the world.

But those who once knew him in the days long gone by
Would tell you how wrong you would be.
For in fact, it's quite true that this lost, broken soul
Was once just like you and like me.

He woke up every morning in a home of his own
That he shared with his son and his wife.
He worked every day as a painter by trade
And thanked God every night for his life.

People who watched him admired his ways.
He was caring and decent and good.
He worked harder than most to provide for his son,
And for neighbors he did what he could.

Life was a struggle, and times could be bad,
But he always found strength to go on.
He wanted the best for the people he loved,
Never dreaming that soon they'd be gone.

It happened in winter on a dark, snowy day,
In a storm that had moved in quite fast
That his wife ventured forth to pick up their son,
And neither survived when they crashed.

From the day they were buried his friends rallied round,
But he was lost despite how much they tried.
And even today when they speak of him still,
They say it's as if they all died.

And when I last sat at that light, by that stoop,
I saw he was no longer there.
The store still sat empty and was now boarded up,
And I wondered if anyone cared.

But later I learned on that stoop where he lived,
That place that he once made his home
He too passed away on one cold winter's day,
Long forgotten and left quite alone.

So should you pass by a lost soul such as this,
Be careful how harshly you judge him.
For you can't ever know how loved he once was,
Or how valued his life may have been.



On December 8, 2023, Austin Macauley Publishers released my book of poetry. It is entitled, "Being Human In This Crazy World" by Patricia Fleming. It can be found online on many book seller sites all over the world. Just Google the title and author and you will find all the locations. It would be a tremendous honor if my peers and...

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Has this poem touched you? Share your story!
  • De Yyu Ting by De Yyu Ting
  • 4 years ago

This is great! I love it! I'm officially a student in an international school. This really helps me a LOT. It didn't only help me for my poem performance, it also teaches people morals. It might be quite sad or emotional, but it is absolutely valuable to read. Phenomenal idea. PERFECT to be shared. Continue on your dreams everyone!

  • Julie R Smeeton by Julie R Smeeton, manchester
  • 4 years ago

This brought tears to my eyes. We cannot judge a book by its cover. Very well written and in depth. You nailed it, and I loved it.

  • Niranjana Anand by Niranjana Anand
  • 4 years ago

I loved the poem. Nice way of telling someone else's story through your rhythmic heartbeats. It made me remember some stranger i used to see while i was going school. Old days...

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