Smolder

He was tall and slender, like a track pro, and his youthful energy belied his age, maybe 70, and his appearance only hinted of his circumstances.   But he shared that he was without a home,  suggested that he could benefit from assistance, excused anyone who would choose not to abide,  and made it clear that his offering would be for all.  He sang Somewhere Over the Rainbow, unspectacularly, though he held the tune, and imbibed it, with innocent spirit.  While singing, he walked the aisle, holding open a hat, and several of us contributed.  When he concluded, after a momentary pause, a woman clapped, and then many of us joined, in an extended gesture, of appreciation.  Moved by the reaction, he said he was so pleased that people still care for music, that he was glad to provide an alternative to rapping, that life itself is a song, not realizing that the tribute was not for his performance -- but rather, his, grace.  While he spoke, we smiled, and gathered, more closely to him.  I pressed my hands together and raised them to my chest, and met the eyes of a woman across from me, a churchgoer I suspect, and she nodded at me, kindly.  He said, whether you have all the money in New York City, or you’re broke as heck like me, you are, and then he sang… Unforgettable…and the train lifted in laughter.  I departed, to transfer lines, crying, holding my head, in my hands, on the next train, where my emotions were, unnoticed.  But I reported the incident to her, and she also had been affected today by experiences of the heart, and we felt, glory.