Ragged Magic


He appeared

Tall and thin.

Tall and thin with a grin.

An ironic smile, with guile

To permit an opening. Friendly enough

So that approach might coach

In anticipation a reciprocal



I saw him in the subway station.

No one else about.

In this city late at night he might,

Considering his dress

Evoke panic, shouts, distress.

But no.

He seemed harmless enough

Made of funny friendly stuff.


“Hello,” he said. Shook his head.

“Sorry about those.” Indicated ragged clothes.

“I am, in this moment, at these dates,

In dire financial straits”.

“I am”, one eyebrow rose, “a magic man.”

He pinched his nose. “I can produce wonders.”

He curled his thumb, touched his chin

To indicate he would begin.

I heard distant thunders.


“Watch!”, he said, and a red

Balloon popped out from his palm.

Without a qualm he twitched his nose.

The balloon arose.

But on his toes he poked the thing.

It sprouted, first, one wing, then another.

Tweeted. Then flew down the tunnel.

“Look!”, he cried, produced a funnel, out from which

Poured golden streams. He grinned and from his eyes

Sprang glowing gleams. I leaped back.

With a “crack!” he shook his beard

And disappeared!


I peered behind a nearby post.

There he stood, most delighted

At my surprise.

He winked his eyes.

I wished him luck.

Gave him a buck.






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