I see it in your eyes.
How you cannot meet my gaze,
your lips — a thin line.
your white knuckles.
Is it because my accent tells you that I was born abroad?
Is it because my clothes are worn, mismatched or outdated?
Is it how I reek of urine, booze and sweat?
Yes, I understand disgust.
You have never seen what I have seen.
You have never felt the thorns I have.
You have never woken up to cluster bombs exploding.
You don’t have blisters, you have never walked a mile in my shoes.
How about compassion?
A little late to the party this week and quite busy this week. But I couldn’t stop myself from submitting.
Friday Fictioneers is a wonderful blogging community for fiction (and sometimes poetry).
Rochelle selects the example… we follow and do our best.
May 17, 2018
A wonderful POV piece here, Bjorn! Love it, and it is so very true for far too many. Great write this week!
Thank you.. it took me some time to come up with an idea fitting for the shoes.
Beautifully done, Björn. If only people would stop judging and show more compassion, what a wonderful world we would live in.
Excellent choice of accompaniment!
(By the way, 3rd line, a small typo w instead of y 😉 )
Thank you.. and how much easy it is showing compassion for a sweet little child than a reeking old man
Great piece. There’s a story behind everyone.
Yes.. there is always something in everyone.
This is beautiful, Bjorn. We truly don’t know what has happened to others. You caught that in your poem. Kindness never hurt anybody.
(How wou cannot meet my gaze – wou should be you, I think)
We do judge… and it’s hard to move past disgust.
I’m glad you didn’t stop yourself from submitting. Well done.
Ha.. I wrote this on Thursday.. but I must have forgotten to link up.
Wow, that was so powerful and poignant too. Beautifully done – and so very true!
Susan A Eames at
Travel, Fiction and Photos
I think it’s hard to see beyond disgust.
Wonderful Bjorn! Life lessons abound! Well done!
Indeed… thank you
A lovely read. Only the wearer knows …………
We all know… but the wearer feels.
So true. 🙂
How about compassion indeed. So often we don’t ask how things got to where they are and just see the mess in front of us as though it had no causes
So much easier to pass around blame than trying to understand
Too little compassion in this world. Well said.
I think it’s all about listening.
Well written, well said. Would that we could walk a mile in each others’ shoes.
Thank you.. maybe we should at least try to imagine the blisters.
Very powerful! I can feel how angry the person is from the society and their assumptions.
Yes.. and he has the right to be angry
A lovely reflective and touching story. I’m sure we could all be more compassionate with each other.
I think so too… but sometimes we have to look beyond the reek…
Well put Bjorn
Thank you Laurie
I always assumed that getting someone to walk a mile in my shoes would teach them compassion. Lately I’ve noticed that all they do is complain about the blister.
I think compassion can be taught without blisters…
A strong and angry voice and completely understandable. There is far too much judging of others in the world and too little compassion. A really strong and affective story.
Thank you.. yes there is anger, but also questioning how someone could judge him
My cousin had the original version of that song (by Joe South). It was one of the first songs we learned to play on guitars. Your poem was a fine tribute to it.
I have to look for the original, but this is the one that I found.
Compassion is what the world could do with more of. Nice one.
Compassion is not always pretty though… sometimes it’s messy
Too bad we’re not more understanding and caring for those in need.
I think it’s often hard to see beyond disgust and prejudice…
Unfortunately too true. I know I’ve been guilty and I’ve done better, but not as much as I should.
Powerful writing, Bjorn. I always say we never know what war someone has fought or is still fighting. Great piece.
So many wars are raging inside the common man or woman…
Moving stuff Bjorn. We could all do with a little more empathy, eh?
Sometime it’s just to treat everyone as a human being.
Well stated. We can never know the rough road some others have walked.
I think often we don’t want to know.
I think when we know, it makes us feel accountable and /or guilty for the luxury we live in. On the other hand, a person can’t be crying all the time for the terrible plight of innocent victims, when we can’t do anything to improve it.
Judging before the facts are in…. Poignant… well said. I don’t even like the judging after the facts, usually.