Thursday, 28 January 2016
I killed a man today
For audio click here
I killed a man today.
It feels strange to know that a man is dead because of me.
Not murder, or even manslaughter, or soldier killing soldier.
Not even accidental death, or a revenge in prose.
But a man who was alive this morning is no longer alive now.
He’s gone; shuffled off this mortal coil; passed way before his time.
His friends have already been on the news saying what a lovely man he was. Flowers have been left at the gates of the university where he studied.
His parents, half way across the globe, were woken with news of their son’s demise.
And it was all my fault.
What did I do?
I was impatient, and my impatience led to the death of a man.
As usual the Cardiff rain was sweeping in from the bay; tiny minuscule drops that make you wetter than you think they should.
I was getting from A to B, and wanted to be at B as quickly as I could.
I saw the man on the other side of the road; head over his phone, umbrella over his head.
I paid him no heed.
He didn’t concern me.
He was not in my way.
I looked left and right and left again.
In Germany when the red man is on display, you wait for the green guy to come along before you step into the road,
and people obey the rules.
I’ve heard it’s the same in the Far East,
maybe in Singapore where the dead man came from.
But I was not in Germany, or Malaysia or Singapore
I was getting wet in Cardiff; so as soon as it was safe to cross, I walked, regardless of the colour of the lights.
Sensing me step into the road, the man opposite walked
not looking up from his phone; not lifting his brolly to check for on coming cars.
I warned him, I did.
Look where you are going, I barked.
I could see that he had not seen the oncoming truck.
But he kept his head bowed and his brolly low.
The lorry dragged him a good thirty metres before its brakes worked in the wet weather.
He was dead by then of course.
I can hear you say it was not my fault.
But had I not stepped off the curb;
had I waited for the green man;
had I not been in such a hurry to get out of the rain,
then that man from Singapore would still be alive.