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be careful on the streets of orange

best be careful
on the streets of orange;
there are poets among us!

on my way and almost late,
but almost there -
right turn interrupted
by a pedestrian wanting to cross the street.
i interrupted my right turn
because that is the right thing to do.
i smiled at the pedestrian and motioned
for her to go ahead.
looking at me, she said,
move your a_ _ i need to
f_ _in' cross the g-d damned street!'

anger flashed through me for a moment
and i felt the stab of every other time
an intended good deed was maligned
or misunderstood.
but i let the anger fly from me
and smiled again as i finished my right turn,
thinking of how i would put that lady into a poem.

so be careful on the streets of orange, nj,
before you swear at a driver
who was about to let you cross in front of you,
or you just might wind up
in a poem.

orange, nj
12 Oct. 2007