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At what point should pride give sway?  
And what is pride anyway?….

He is bent,

Black and prostrated, his eyes wide
with need,

asking passersby for
A coin or a dollar.

Most ignore him,

Or heap scorn upon his old person.

I want to help him,
but have no coin of my own….

I’m at the welfare office,
for the eighth time in my

51 years.

I’ve worked hard for most of it,
But scornful eyes look down on me,
and ask if I’d broken my back.

I tell them no,
and they push me out their door.

If I could crawl into the woods and die,

I would.