Writing Workshop Wednesday: Carry the Message, by Johnny Jaworski


 Dirty hands holding cross photo by Bigstock.


Strolling down Davie Street, I came across a sorry-looking individual sitting on the sidewalk, a toque full of holes sitting in front of him, sorting a few coins.  His hair was dirty, greasy, long and scraggly and in his bushy white beard there were traces of food or maybe vomit.  His filthy t-shirt said, “Love thy Neighbour as Thyself.”  On the ground beside him was a cardboard sign with the words, “Turn the Other Cheek” printed on it in squiggly letters.  I noticed that the bottom of one of his shoes was hanging out like a dog’s panting tongue.


As I leaned over to put a couple of quarters into his hat I could smell piss, puke, and alcohol.


“What is your name?”  I asked him.


“Jesus Christ,” he replied, with a slight slur.


“Nice to meet you, Jesus,” I said.  “You seem a bit down on your luck today.”


“My father has forsaken me these days, my friend,” he said.  “It seems he doesn’t like my being drunk so much lately.  I think I’d best cut down or quit drinking for my own good.”


”You know, Jesus, I’m on my way to an AA meeting.  Have you heard of AA?”


“Yes, I have,” he stuttered.


“Hey,” I said.  “How about you come with me and help some people how to hook up with your father.  Many of our members have trouble getting in touch with a higher power.  You could help us and maybe we could help you.”


Jesus looked at me as if to ask me a question or something.  Then he turned his head and spit on the ground.  Suddenly, he got to his feet, a little unsteadily, put his arm in mine and said, “I’d like that, friend.  Lead the way.”



Johnny participates in Megaphone's creative writing workshop at the Gathering Place.


Get on your megaphone

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