The Unclaimed Man

© Chris Wood
© Chris Wood

He rested comfortably on the ledge that protruded conveniently from the old brick building. His hollow stare betrayed no clue as to his thoughts and taking into consideration his appearance, one might suspect that nothing meaningful was swirling around in his head. He was, after all, the proverbial homeless man.

A tattered Fedora crowned him and he wore it slightly askew, as if style was still important to him. His weathered face had a dusky appearance, though from exposure to the sun or from dirt was up for debate. The uneven stubble sprinkled across his cheeks, chin and upper lip suggested that his last shave had been a few weeks ago.

An old suit coat, stained and torn covered a dingy button down shirt. The ensemble was completed with a mismatched pair of slacks that stretched down to his shoeless feet. A cigarette was tucked neatly between his index and middle finger in his right hand and the smoke curled up and wreathed his head, as if trying to conceal his presence.

My camera at the ready, I aimed and shot. I had no idea what mark, if any that this man had left on the world, but I was determined to preserve him, this version of him at least, for the world to see and remember. A wounded soldier in the battle of life deserved at least a photographic memorial.

~V

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9 thoughts on “The Unclaimed Man

    1. Thanks PJ. The story was from a writing assignment and it was based on the photo you see. I took several pictures of a homeless gentleman in Bisbee Arizona and wanted to share my experience. I didn’t speak with the man, but I’ve always wondered what stories of his life he might have told.

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