--- 'If a man be gracious and courteous to strangers,
it shows he is a citizen of the world.' Longfellow
There was a young Dutchman called Vincent
who painted the postman and peasant
living in hovels,
loving the brothels,
relationships always unpleasant.
In Etton, his father, a preacher,
his mother, a climber, a reacher:
starry, his passion,
conflict, a mission,
intensity always his teacher.
In ten years of painting, he shows
how to catch nature’s heaven, god knows!
Fighting his battle,
‘til a death rattle
arched him away with the crows.
Ask a stranger’s name
and call them by their moniker
again, again, again. Smile!
Pose some little question
about themselves, a happenstance;
their tiny likes and dislikes, fads,
(and food’s a classic - fries and pudding,
vegetables, drink?) Persist.
Question ‘are you married?’
with a little twinkle
then ask them, now, to help you
in some small way – like, get a drink.
Call them by their name, again.
Say ‘I love you.’ Smile.