On Sunday at the corner of 26th and Marion, at the dread end of a long commute, I saw a man with a broom. Not some ordinary man with an ordinary broom, but a man centuries dry and a broom fresh from manufacture, its bristles still unbroken — a man with a smile as wide as Cuba, his brickled skin polished to a sheen, much like his hair, his teeth, his leather shoes, much like the blue of his broom’s long stick. It is as if he stood sentry there, unmoved beneath the brash LED’s of the streetlight by the HyVee, giddy with his broom, blade up and sheathed — O Cedar — stiff and unstirred as the razorsharp creases of his starched black slacks: his shirt white, his tie green and full Windsor. And though he could have marched across that intersection like some muscular legion unvanquished and unmolested by traffic that yields no quarter, he waited for the light to change. He waited, old man in his pride, this man and his pike, this old man wielding a broom as if he held the gates of some great and fragile fortress, gazing out — immortal.

Image: Saskia Wustefeld on Unsplash

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