A little more than two miles,
Sunny cool Autumn afternoon,
The sidewalk is quiet,
Tires on the street are not.
The occasional foot wanderer passes by,
One young couple holding hands,
We nod like members of a sunshine club,
Soles for our souls instead of tires.
I snap a fallen leaf on the sidewalk,
Perfectly in Autumn's spotlight,
Half- listening to a podcast,
Trying to hear over the tire noise,
And over my own walking thoughts.
My shield of painted lines,
Red green orange white lights,
I wave at the observational kindnes of strangers,
Remnant of polite society.
It strikes me how much better the world could be,
If only we could commute on our feet,
The amazing investment we'd make in public health,
The connection to nature and seasons,
Something our society doesn't seem to see.
I think of how it is we view people on their feet,
We who ride on magic carpets of glass and plastic and steel,
Our lives so rooted in seats.
It was just yesterday I overheard,
"He was walking down rhe street like he was homeless,"
I know we need to change that frame,
In search of,
I remember the clear and clean skies,
Spring of 2020,
I could see the distant hills,
A reminder of my childhood,
I know how clear we could see and breathe.
All I know,
It doesn't matter who thinks what,
Given the choice,
I'll take the walk.
By: Daniel A. Stafford