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Unanswered questions

Audio recording of this poem

I once met a man who was singing the blues
For coins to buy food on a cold windy street
His head had no hair and his feet had no shoes
So I took him inside for something to eat

He ravaged his chops without need of a fork
his face was well travelled and hoary
Then licking his fingers he started to talk
As I listened he told me his story

“I fell deeply in love in my teenage years
My heart was strong but my mind was weak
I was loved and left and I shed many tears
In the arms of another relief I did seek

Then to my surprise I just walked away
And she then in turn was hurt by me
The reason I did it I never could say
Convincing myself that I had to be free

If the truth had been known I’d have then let it rest
So I wondered what drove me to lose what I loved
But I’d learned for protection that distance is best
When tender emotions are pushed or they’re shoved"

His throat was dry so I got him a drink
Then I sat down between him and the door
He downed about half then gave me a wink
And within a short time he was telling me more

“With a teary eye and a pain in my heart
I left the warmth of my home and kin
to search for truth I made my start
as I soared aloft in a tube of tin

Years before I’d have taken a train
to search for truth as I made a start
before that still I’d have held a rein
and galloped away with a horse and cart

The years are filled with forgotten dreams
Of hope and love and an olive branch
But the years don’t care or so it seems
As they rumble by like an avalanche

And they never pause to smell a rose
Still I mark them off to show my age
In a one-way march the time just flows
As I play my part on my life’s own stage

So back to my point where was I now?
Searching for answers, the meaning of life
With the heart of a youth but no idea how
Though answers are plenty deception is rife

I decided quite early that god was a joke
And followed the path of a simple truth seeker
And Jesus was really one hell of a bloke
and surely a great motivational speaker

But god I believe was created by man
So ignorant fools can be dragged into line
As a means to control whoever they can
Religions all claim him “he gave us a sign”

So I sought the words of the true and the wise
Who’ve expended a lifetime in seeking the truth
Who would proudly expound now without a disguise
Standing loyal and strong like the Moabite Ruth

‘Dear folk if you please now address my concerns
In matters of heart where the lines are not clear
If the more a man knows the more a man learns
Why does he squander the things he holds dear?’

Well the wise they listened and gathered around
And they thought out the answers I’d seek
and when they had come up with something profound
they elected a person to speak

’It seems to me son that the search for the truth
Consumes and absorbs our awakening days
But open mind attitude passes with youth
And quickly we harden and set in our ways

The search for true love is a gamble at best
And the uncertain lover believes of the heart
That to find if it’s true must be put to the test
But the test that it’s put to can tear it apart

So unless one believes only quandaries remain
Shall this heart be wagered or placed on a shelf?
Will it sing like an angel or just leave a stain?
So often the outcome defines sense of self’

The words seemed sound but I needed more
The nature of love defined
Maybe I knew but was just making sure
My questions becoming refined

’If a man could live a thousand years
And heed the song of the peaceful dove
Would he find a way to stem the tears
Of those he hopes to see in love?

Or is it true that his hands are tied
behind his back with a fateful rope
And must the tears in fact be cried?
Can a man do naught, is there no hope?

can “love” be created or does it just be
can a man or a woman just set new love free?
desire alone seems an unworthy seed
is the longing so pure or is it just greed?
to create who you dream instead of to find
is hardly to love, should love not be blind
and willing to have and to hold and to keep
not shallow perfection but rather quite deep?
to love what is there is a million times more
with no guarantee but to still be so sure
maybe though sir I am being pedantic
and maybe creation is rather romantic
of course I could be just a gullible fool
but love if you find it is surely a jewel.’

They said that my questions were answers as well
For the truth I should look to my heart
And I had to believe them they’d nothing to sell
And it seemed like a good place to start

So you see I found truth or opinions at least
Too many in fact to know which to trust
But the learning and life were a passionate feast
And I guess in the end we just do what we must

We land on our bums or stand tall and proud
But at least if we’ve followed our dreams
Our lives will be full and not ruled by the crowd
Nor lived the way someone else deems

And if you find love and it is in fact real
Then regardless the course that it takes
It nests in your heart without need for a seal
This fulfillment that only love makes

But if you miss out it was still worth the try
Don’t let yourself fall as you grieve
And if you end up with enough to get by
You were lucky, or so I believe…"

He finished his drink then he got to his feet
and he spoke as he shook my hand

“Thanks for the feed ’twas a pleasure to meet
Son remember to make your own stand”

He walked out the door and he vanished from sight
Before I could ask him his name
And I often recall what he told me that night
When It feels love is only a game

But the funny thing was as he sat in that chair
surrounded by plenty of folk
No one else saw him or knew he was there
They thought I was making a joke

© Matthew Penfold 2009

Unanswered questions

Matt Penfold

Joined December 2008

  • Artist
  • Comments 47

Artist's Description

This is a few bits and pieces that I put together over the last couple of months, mostly about love. Some parts are modified comments or themes from comments, also there are ideas, themes and metaphor inspired by other RedBubble writers.

Audio recording of this poem

Artwork Comments

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