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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: April 28, 2011

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Submitted: April 28, 2011



Reginald and Jonathan were both born in May

At the same second and on the same day

Reginald was born to riches great

But Jonathan was born to a darker fate.

Reginald grew up in a huge fancy home

His family taking him to places like France and Rome

He was waited on by nannies, servants and such

He never knew his mother or father's gentle touch.

Jonathan grew up on the wrong side of the tracks

Raised up in a neighborhood of shanty shacks

His mother and father, though very poor

Showered love on the child they both did adore.

Reginald had tutor's to teach him fine social graces

That he needed to know when going to fine places

He never worked a single day his whole life long

He filled his younger days with wine, women and song.

Jonathan's mother and father taught him how to survive

When you barely had enough food to keep you alive.

He began working early when his mom suddenly fell ill

He worked so he could help his father pay the hospital bill.

Reginald felt that life owed him everything it could give

But deep in his heart bitter discontement did live

He lost his parents when they were robbed and shot

Of his inheritance he soon frittered away the whole lot.

Jonathan worked hard to get food and pay the rent

But he had folks he knew loved him, so he was content.

Jonathan's father died, leaving just his mother and he

He worked two jobs just so on their plates food would be.

Reginald had no job skills, so when his wealth was gone

Hard and destitute times he very soon fell upon

Those hard times soon forced him to go place to place

To try to find work only to be turned away in disgrace.

His pride and arrogance gone, he now lived on the street

Struggling from day to day just to find enough to eat

One day in a food line he was shocked and surprised

In the serving line to see the face of a man he recognized.

Reginald had taken instant dislike to the man at first glance

Trying to cause trouble for him whenever he got the chance

The man'd worked for his family, and when he'd been able

He reminded the man it was they who put food on his table.

Reginald could tell that the man also had recognized him

As for just a brief moment the man's face grew grim

And then Reginald had watched in stunned surprise

As compassion and kindness filled the man's eyes.

The man, whose nametag said "Jonathan" gave him a smile

As on Reginald's plate food he began to pile

As he sat down to eat, from time to time he would glance

At Jonathan as strange thoughts began to whirl and dance.

From that day forward he would come there to dine

And then began moving further and further back in line

(He had noticed that the serving line people would never eat

Till all had been served and taken their seat.)

The day came he was the last in front of Jonathan to stand

And with an awkward smile he slipped a note in his hand

Jonathan read the note, then looked up with a smile

And said "I will join you in just a while."

Reginald had give great thought to what he'd put on that note

And here were the simple words that he wrote

"I would like to ask you to join me at mealtime today

For there something to you that I simply must say."

They sat eating in silence, then Reginald turned his head

And with a look of true heartfelt remorse he said

"I asked you to join me for I wanted you to know

That I am sorry for my actions all those years ago."

"I treated you like the scum of the earth

As if you had no feelings, thoughts or worth,

Because you had not money nor lived in a house grand

And if you don't forgive me, I'll understand."

"Perhaps what I say next will somewhat explain

Why I sought so hard to cause you pain.

The truth of the matter is I was jealous of you

For you had a family who loved you true."

"I have been watching you here, the way you act

And have come to realize a rather startling fact

Day after day extra food with me you share

And in your eyes I can see that you truly do care."

Jonathan, who had listened intently the whole entire while

Gazed in Reginald's eyes with a calm gentle smile

"Apology accepted, let the past stay in the past

Those moments are over, they did not last."

"Now, I have something that I've been wanting to ask you,

And I want you to take the time to think it through.

The place that I work is a man short, you see

I can recommend you, if interested you'd be."

"The work is hard labor, you'll end the day plumb dead beat

But it would give you a chance to get back on your feet.

I work for the highway department, laying asphalt all day,

It's backbreaking work, but it has fairly decent pay."

"As for shelter, you can even stay with me for a time

My neighborhood's poor but fairly free of crime."

Reginald sat there a moment as his mind did race

Then he looked at Jonathan with hope on his face,

"You know where I come from, and where I am now

That I have no real job skills, but this I solemnly vow

If what you say is true, your job really needs a new man

I promise you that I will do the very best that I can."

Jonathan's face lit up with a huge, radiant smile,

"Okay, then sit here and relax for a short while.

There are a few chores to do and I must help with those

But then we can leave and go try to get you a few clothes."

Reginald, his eye's thoughtful, spoke up hesitantly to ask

"Do you think they might let me help you with your task?"

So they both worked together till all was sparkling and bright

Then they both headed out into the soft summer night.

Reginald got the job, no task did he ever shirk

As side by side with Jonathan he did work.

For years they worked so hard side by side

That the owner left the company to them when he died.

They each got better homes in a better part of town.

And both of them got married and settled down.

And right up to the day that their health began to decline

They would serve others in the shelter food service line.

One night Reginald was laying in his comfortable bed

When all at once a strange idea passed through his head.

"I'll never understand the strange workings of fate

For my very best friend is a man that I once did hate."

© Copyright 2019 MARANTHA JENELLE. All rights reserved.

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