Mr Ondo

one afternoon as I came home
to the building where I lived alone
I met an old man on the stairs
as he paused to catch his breath there

his face was drawn and pale
his hand was clenched to grip the rail
he had a long way to go
and his name was Mr. Ondo

I offered him my helping hand
my steady legs to help him stand
“my room’s upstairs and straight ahead
I’m not feeling very well,” he said

we reached the door, he turned the key
he turned around to look at me
and I saw myself in years to come
“thank you” he said, I said “you’re welcome”

and we all have so far to go
don’t we, Mr. Ondo

time passed by and all too soon
there came another afternoon
when I was home alone once more
with some one rapping at my door

it was Mr. Ondo looking well
holding out a dollar bill
as so eagerly he bowed his head
“this is for your help” he said

I refused but he would not relent
and then I saw how much it meant
a dollar for the man inside
for that was how he wore his pride

and pride is all that you’ve got left
when they’ve all gone and you’ve been left
at home alone in a winter’s chill
so I took his dollar bill

and we all have so far to go
don’t we, Mr. Ondo

I never saw him after that
the place was sold and that was that
we all had to pack up and leave
and he’s passed on I do believe

but sometimes when all is said and done
and I see myself in years to come
I think how fragile this humanity
I hope some one does the same for me

and we all have so far to go
don’t we, Mr. Ondo