The Vagabond: Symbol of Sovereignty

The park bench sleeping man is awakened by sudden dew drops that fell upon his bearded face from the sycamore tree that enveloped him for the night. The unsteadiness of his rise is a stark reminder of the 50 miles he punished his legs with the day prior. He stretches, yawns, and then straps his heavy pack that he used as a pillow, to his sore back. He lights his half smoked cigarette that he calls breakfast and pushes on.

The lonesome man walks through the morning aroused city as a sidewalk spectator to the prolific commotion of everydayness. Vagabonds, like himself, walk more of God’s created earth in one hour than most folks walk in a week. No amount of wealth can buy the independence and leisurely drifting of their profession. The ultimate reward for the vagabond is his disengagement from worldliness. He walks with an organic rejection to the miniscule rules set by society that dethrones individualism, and adheres to self liberation as having moral precedence. The self-governing man represents an outright assault on conventional values that detain the masses. The vagabond believes these values to be a type of caged conformity to a bogus American dream that breeds spiritual death, and wants no part of it. His luxury is found in a renunciation of accountability; a despiser of stability who thrives on insecurity and the unknown.

His sun burnt neck symbolizes the endurance of the high noon walk. Tired from miles hiked and hunger prevailing, he relaxes at the side of a gas station. The red-faced vagabond fiercely drinks from the rusted spigot at the side of the store. He then buys his first meal of the day, which consists of a snicker bar and banana. The small amount of money he has is earned by the occasional side job, but mostly from merciful donations from people who are in the real need of charity. But he never begs. His lifestyle is embraced to endure the bitter consequences. He doesn’t accept any routine that would involve the sacrifice of self-sovereignty. Rules and laws are for people who have social security cards, cell phones, identifications and ambition, not for the soul that contributes nothing and expects nothing from the social order. They have kept themselves unspotted from the modern world and live with a type of primitive simplicity like ancient gypsies.

Twilight arrives and recedes the blissful afternoon away. The lone road pirate carries on to an endless destination. Nature is his home and where he feels most alive. He breathes in the vibrant wildflowers that litter the springtime meadows and appreciates the beautiful countryside that most people don’t even take a gander at. He walks along like an old prophet with nothing but poetic dreams and an intoxicating passion for a self-imposed exile. These back alley disciples live with no regrets of their past and no purpose for the future. They live deliberately in moments; which lifestyles are harshly judged with a type of vulgar profligacy from the people who pass them by. The same folks driving by are deemed in the vagabond’s mind as the “delusional ones” who fell into the lethal trap of bustle. Now they suffer with ulcers eating away their stomachs like ravenous vultures, due to their constant stress and worries to maintain a vain flamboyant status. The vagabond dodged the modern ambush of the status-quo protocol and embodied an absolute autonomy that is only ruled by nature. And like Jesus, he is rejected by the same society he’s trying to save. So he maintains his trek, letting the sins of the world pass him by.

The night walking brings out the deepest thoughts and desires from the vagabond. The egg-shell moon drips radiance upon April nights and he’s steered by a blazing faith. The dusk companions entail the fluttering of midnight bats, chirping crickets and dreary night owls. The droning glow from the street-lamps exposes the repetitious row of houses that inhabit tedious lives of dismay. The vagabond walks through the cold neighborhoods, taking a glance every now and then, into the illuminate windows. He observes loveless marriages, television seduced hermits and debt drowning men whose lives are a veneer of riches but souls are poverty-stricken. The trivial houses inhabit exhausted housewives, whose blood is soiled with Prozac and lips are stained from wine; empty, lost and numb. These uptown home-bodies are all teetering on the verge of over-medicated insanity. It merely takes an occurrence, misfortune or the tipping point of extreme boredom, to utterly derange their whole way of life. The drifter decries the hedonist suburbanite’s with a shake-of-head and moves on. “Where is the Life we have lost in living? Where is the Wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the Knowledge we have lost in information?”

The unchained weary foot-walker pursues the edge of town to find sacred seclusion for timeless sleep. Mantle of stars, pine scent zephyr and trickling water from a maternal creek absorb the hours of darkness. The vagabond plops down creek-side, and shuts his eyes knowing that as the rest of the humdrum world will be awoken by monotonous alarm clocks; he will be awoken by the scent of blooming lilacs, the melody of bravely singing sparrows and the sensation of morning dew drops upon his bearded face. Serenity.


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