From the recording Cold

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(M. James, J. James)

He sat there on a bench, hunched against the night’s cold
No jacket, just a scarf, his shoes rundown, so old
He mumbled to himself, as those types often do
And hugged his arms around his chest, each time the wind blew

His expression made me think of a person I once knew
So I threw him a dollar and his sad eyes said, “thank you”
I thought, as I walked away, “that could be me someday”
And many cold blocks later, that thought was there to stay

I thought about this world’s strays
Its vagrants, tramps, its castaways,
Someone’s child, a mom or dad,
Or the friend I never had?

I walked the long walk back, against a driving sleet
Filled with good intentions, and a measure of conceit
The icy bench was empty, but his scarf, it still lay there
I sat down beside it, and began to really care

Chilled to the bone I wrapped his scarf around my collar
Hours passed, people passed, one tossed me a dollar
I felt the icy blasts of wind, I felt the falling snow
I felt so much wiser then, than just three hours ago,


At three a.m. a man came by, He gave me quite a start
When he sat down by me, I felt the beating of my heart
He didn’t say a word, just sat there really still
And though we’d never met, I felt I knew him well

Another hour passed as we endured the winter storm
But, when he arose to leave, I suddenly felt warm
His hopeful eyes met mine and I felt him search me deep
As darkness closed around him, I heard, “Feed my sheep”