“Polo” was a man. He was a man who made his home along the North Claiborne Avenue corridor. I did not know Polo but I do know that he breathed, he ate, he wanted, he dreamt, he laughed and cried. Polo knew hunger and likely knew fullness. I am sure that Polo, like all of us, was a bit complicated. Here follows is an homage to Polo and to so many others who live on Holy Ground. Polo was shot and killed on February 10th 2019:
The Poor and Homeless gather on ground to prepare a temporary space that they claim as home for sometimes a short period or possibly longer.
The space they claim often has a barrier made of dirt or a passive circle of boxes. It is their crib or home for however long it takes to find alternative living arrangements.
Visitors are welcome to bring food and hygiene items. Most often the residents of this Holy Place are grateful for the offerings they receive.
Some of the folks that have received a calling to serve the poor in this Holy Place have experienced the gift of seeing the image of God in people living in dire poverty. They have agreed to share in the suffering of others. Yes a Holy gift.
Now one of God’s chosen has vacated His space in this Holy Place. He is gone because of an act of violence. The people who lived around Him in their tents and Boxes have lost one of their own. I also grieve for this loss of one of God’s chosen. Because of the gift that God has given me to serve the lowliest has brought forth in my grief the recognition of my love for all people. Why do I grieve? For a moment in time I am overwhelmed with a feeling of loss but my tears are wiped away with the hope of Christ.
We will walk on. We will continue to serve in humility and with a heart of gratitude.
May our friend Rest In Peace and be Raised up on the Last Day.