The Work of Love (Reprise)

There are those meant to make money
There are those destined for fame
There are those of whom posterity
Will make a household name

There are those who lead the people
From a seat political
And then there are the heroes
We don’t hear about at all

Who give their time and money
To help others all their lives
Or spend their best years nursing
Sickly parents, children, wives

Who choose a job with lower pay
To the satisfaction feel
Of a professional pursuit
Which has directly real

Benefits for those they serve,
Who go to live far jungles in
That by their work the blessings of
Modern medicine begin

To benefit those far away
From the prosperity
And ease of sweet existence
In which they were born to be

There are those who walk our cities’ streets
Blessing everyone they see
I know because one homeless night
It happened thus to me

And strange to say the story
But later in that very night
I woke to someone standing near
Would give a saint a fright

So pale, so starved, so desperate
He swayed e’en as he stood
I’d nothing but my blanket
Which might do him any good

But plainly did he wish that blanket
Instead wrapped around him be
And plainly he considered
Taking it by force from me

I gazed at him, and he gazed back
No one was anywhere around
He could have killed me if he wished
Not until morning I’d be found

Nor would much interest at all
Be given to my fate
Murder among the homeless
Raises small concern, not great

Although I felt afraid of him
My eyes full of compassion were
And he, through all his suffering
That true compassion did infer

Wrapped arms around him tighter
He sadly bowed his head
And staggered off to find another
Victim in my stead

I cannot but believe
That blessing given just in time
Allowed me from that blanket
The next morning whole to climb

History will not sing about
The one who came out of his home
To pound feet on hard sidewalks
And our ugliest streets roam

It will not celebrate the million
Quiet ministrations of
The legion of sweet sacred souls
Who carry on the work of love


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