The travelers and merchants averted their eyes from the beggar who sat in the dust.
He muttered, “Have mercy” as he rocked to and fro, ignoring their words of disgust.
His only possession, a tattered old shawl, he had draped and pulled over his eyes.
It shielded from heat and diminished the cold; how he worshipped this most precious prize.
He found the old garment, discarded and torn, as he searched through the garbage one night.
And though he was blind, he imagined this cloth was a strikingly beautiful sight.
The beggar had wrestled back many a foe, who attempted to steal this old thing,
But when he would wear it, he pictured himself as a powerful, opulent king.
The road out of Jericho proved a good spot, for a beggar to cry out for alms.
And if he was early he might find some shade, underneath one of several large palms.
But this day was different, the roadway was jammed, there was something attracting a crowd.
So the beggar positioned himself in the sun, as the gathering mass became loud.
He reached out and grabbed at the sandal of one who kicked dust and dirt up in his face.
But he cried out louder, “What is going on? Does some Ruler parade past this place?”
“Shut-up!” said a woman, “We all want to hear. The great Prophet approaches the gate.”
“Stay out of the way, you old blind beggar man. For your sins have brought on your sad fate.”
“Jesus?” he whispered, as he threw back his shawl, for he wanted to hear every word.
He screamed out much louder, “Have mercy on me!” for he knew he must make his voice heard.
A sudden odd silence surrounded the throng, as the words “Come to me” echoed loud.
The beggar was trembling, unsure what to do, as expectancy swept through the crowd.
“The Master is calling. He’s waiting for you. So arise and come, oh you most blessed.”
The beggar clutched tightly his tattered old shawl, for this garment was all he possessed.
He smelled a foul stench that came out of the cloth and he knew he must leave it behind.
Discarding his past, he fell down at the feet of the Master who could heal the blind.
The beggar man’s eyes were open that day, as he came to the Giver of Sight.
He never looked back on that old tattered cloth as he followed the Giver of Light.
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