The prompt over at Carry On Tuesday is the title of Sarah McLachlan’s song “In the Arms of an Angel.” The idea for Carry on Tuesday it to write something containing the exact phrase. Could be the opening of a famous book, a song title, or lines of a poem.
Sixteen and alone, he thought the streets offered the best escape from the beatingsand the hassles at home.
He’d learned more in two weeks then he ever did at school:
*It you ball up newspaper before stuffing it down your pants and between layers of grimy shirts, it insulates better.
*Avoid large groups of homeless men who are gathered with nothing to do – and have been medicating their plight with alcohol.
*People increase their handouts if your fingernails are clean – and you don’t smell like urine.
*Smell always dictates whether the food in the dumpster is OK to eat.
*Plastic between layers of corrugated cardboard will keep the concrete’s chill from your bones.
*A box of condoms and a smile in the financial district always is good for a quick $10.
But there are gaps in education, even on the streets.
He tore a hole in leg scrambling over a chain-link fence to avoid an overly excited rent-a-cop. The puncture wound never bled very much. But the damage was done.
He tried to curl up as tight as possible under a bridge abutment, nearly delirious from the chills, the sepsis in his blood too advanced.
And at the end, he found solace, a sense of peace, in the arms of an angel.