I have been meditating on the parable of the Good Samaritan for about two months in relationship to the death of George Floyd, and then the poet, David Whyte in a recent online seminar talked about the Good Samaritan as meeting the stranger! It got me to continue thinking about different aspects of the parable. Wondering if I was the wounded person? Well I’d written a poem about that. Wondering if I was one of the people who walked by? And why would I do that? What would I be afraid of? Wondering if I was the Samaritan and did I walk by only to come back? And what drew me back?
Wonder if I’m still the wounded person and I find myself looking at me? Do I know where those wounds come from? Am I willing to help this wounded me or will I walk on as though I haven’t seen?
Yesterday (July 22) I was out for my walk and almost home. A little girl ran up to me and told me her name, I told her mine. Then she spelled her name for me. She is 6 and had just turned 6. She was riding a little scooter with pink wheels which I appreciated very much. She couldn’t have a birthday party because of the virus….didn’t I know. She is in kindergarten like my grandson and where does he live? Very far away. And her tooth so loose it is dangling, hanging by one thread and I think it will come out today and she is very excited, because it’s her first! Well, I should go, I told her (because she is talking to a stranger and I worry about her openness). Which way am I going? Up the block and to the right. So I’m going this way and then that? Yes. Ok, let’s go. Wait, I say and ask, do your parents let you go around the block? Yes, my dad says its ok. So she rides the sidewalk and I walk the boulevard. I notice the slope and am sure that it is fun to ride down and then hear that the other side of the block is better and she will show me.
I move onto the street and around a car, and there she is waiting for me, because she is faster with her wheels than I am with my feet. I move around another and there she is again loving the game she is creating out of absences. And when we reach the other side of the block, I stop and watch as she sails down the slope of the sidewalk to the alley. She knows I have watched, and when she stops, she turns and waves and yells goodbye.
I met a stranger yesterday morning and so did she….but, which one am I?