The saddest thing I ever saw

was a down-and-out
in awe of a pencil salesman
in a café, midtown Manhattan.
Handsome like a movie star,
the salesman turns on his sales patter,
speaking loudly peachy keens
and aw shucks and I am fine here Sandra
in The Big Apple, but honey
could you look in my…
and the street guy’s envy
like a furnace, his eyes
like beads in a forge,
and then it happens…
just as sales talk goes the way
of big smiles and I gotta go Sandra,
the balding bum, in a worn-out windbreaker,
soiled loafers, shirt open
at the navel, stands up, walks across
to the salesman’s table, and says:
I am going to be an actor.