Pain in another’s heart is imagined 

but never experienced the same. 

Empathetic souls imagine 

how they would feel to identify.  

Others contend their pain is superior  

but yours is nothing serious. 

Religion declares your pain is penance;

enduring it the key to salvation. 

Hatred promotes this pain, 

your kind should suffer for existing. 

Love cares 

Love reaches out 

Love would take your place. 

Middle School Parking Lot 

A sea of black with yellow waves, 

Shines with wetness 

Under glaring halogen lights.

Stepping off the sidewalk, 

Approaching the White Buick.

Pellets of Ice Melt: 

Sodium, Magnesium,

Calcium Chloride broken 

in chunks at my feet  

Pine cones and maple leaves, 

Grass clippings from Fall mowers

Blown together in hay colored islands.

A teacher lost a red pen, 

A seventh-graders’ bottle of 
Peach nail polish

Orphaned carelessly,

Fallen from an open backpack.

John Homan is a poet and percussionist from Bend, Oregon. He is a graduate of Indiana University. His work has appeared in Chiron Review, Former Cactus, and Misfit Magazine among others. He is an ESL tutor in a middle school, happy to have given up 20 years of corporate customer service. He lives with his wife and two cats in Elkhart, Indiana. 
Twitter handle @john_homan. John’s Website is:

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