E. S.

kindness seeps away
over the decades
the memory of younger years
smudgy with layers added
so the truth of kindness
becomes shadowy
next to the truth of profit

what he knows now
one has to pick oneself up
by the bootstraps and work

driven by a restless mind
he sought to ignore
his scorched soul
the scars and sores
invisible to most
the only balance he knew
that of the bank account

and so he found himself
nestled in his lonely bed
visited one night by three ghosts
with bizarre, unearthly powers
he tried to whistle
and wheedle away his fear
but he found he could not

and what he came to know
was a wealth of kindness
few, if any, thought him capable
for now what he set on the balance
was not money

/ / /

This poem was written in response to Wordle 44 at The Sunday Whirl.

26 thoughts on “E. S.

  1. Nice. While my Wordle took a different direction I did write yesterday about another fable… Jack and the bean stalk for Joseph Harker:

    ljóðaháttr: Listen?

    Unstrung the harp // hangs heavily there
    She used to play for him daily
    While the grateful goose // she laid golden eggs
    But ever since jack stole the bird
    All the Giant does for noise is weep…



  2. Well done, Richard! “The truth of kindness becomes shadowy next to the truth of profit” is a significant line.

    My mind is cluttered with a vision of Disney’s Uncle Scrooge, standing by a pile of money!


  3. So much the poem is conveying. It doesn’t even need the Scrooge allusion, because the theme is so universal. The lines that stand out each time I read, are:
    so the truth of kindness
    becomes shadowy
    next to the truth of profit
    Might be fun to try a poem that starts with those lines [and does not allude to Mr. E. S. :-)].



    • Margo, thank you. I agree. You’re not the first person who’s commented on the universal appeal of this one. I think I can just leave it untitled, so that the Scrooge allusion is more subtle. Glad you liked those lines. And I like your idea of following those lines and seeing where they lead.



  4. Funny how lots of us went through that learning curve. I still remember the phrase, “time is money”, golly. Well wrought poem.


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