The Smiling Man

Maybe you can tell me the answer

Or at least think of an assumption

About who appears under the twilight

The one who befriends the leaves and orange sky


Leaves of red and yellow

Falling in motion so slow

Autumn breeze, gentle blow

In this corridor of mellow

He took off his dirty coat

And his hat, his watch

His pride, his pain, and sorrow


I was walking alone

When I saw the man, also alone

Picking up fallen leaves from the ground

He turned his body around


And he noticed me

His eyebrows were lifted

Tilted his head a little bit

And he smiled, tender and lovely


His hand was holding leaves

And his body slowly

gave in to the blowing wind

Turned into leaves

Scattered, flew above trees


The smiling man had vanished

His fragments travelled with the wind

So now I’m still wondering

Who is this man? What is he?


11 thoughts on “The Smiling Man”

      1. You are so welcome! I love the understated hints of the supernatural (understated hints are the best kind). I have so many theories on what he is–fae? Ghost? Hallucination? Or is it something else, like a memory, or a state of mind? You’ve given me a lot to think about. 🙂

      2. Thank you ^^

        To be honest he could be anything, depending on your own interpretation. At first, before this poem became the one that is right now, I had the title in my mind (the smiling man), although I didn’t know how to develop it. At first my interpretation of the smiling man is about worldly things (pain, happiness, sadness, etc) that are experienced by humans during their lifetime (for me, a smile sums up everything). And the twilight here means that it is the days of becoming older and wiser, and it is about time to “fly with the wind”.

        At first that was how I imagined it to be, but then it developed into something that I never thought I would write, about this man who smiled, literally ^^

        Thank you very much for reading and for the comment ^^

      3. I actually thought it could be anything when I read it; that’s what I like about it–it’s up to interpretation.
        So, it started out being metaphorical, but then the man took on an actual presence?
        The idea that all of life can be represented by a smile is quite profound to me.
        I’ve read a lot of WordPress poems in the few months I’ve been on here, but this one is the most haunting.

      4. You have no idea how much it means to me when you said the last sentence (I’m holding my tears inside)

        Yes, I honestly thought “Oh yes I feel that I can’t present the metaphor without an actual scene” and I never thought the man would turn into leaves 😀

        But that is how it turned out, and I’m grateful that was how my mind decide it to be.

        Once again, thank you very much! >.<

      5. Aw, you’re so welcome! It means a lot to me when people take the time to comment on my work, so I try to do the same.

        I really think he’s a fae. Or something. I don’t know if you’ve ever read Jane Eyre, but there’s a scene where she describes her paintings, and your poem reminds me of them.

        Yes, sometimes I’ll start a project with one thing in mind, and then it decides on a mind of its own. 🙂

      6. He could be a fae, yes, a very wise one according to my perspective ^^

        No I’ve never read Jane Eyre, I’ll try to do some search on her writings. Although I’m afraid they weren’t translated into my native language as I’ve never seen her name in any of the bookstore in my country. But I’d love to seek for more inspirations. Thank you! ^^

        Yes! Mind is a very complex part human ^^ High five! 😀

      7. Very few fae know when to let go, in my reading experience, so, yes, very wise!

        I tried to find the excerpt of Jane Eyre where she discusses the paintings, but no luck. Oh, well.

        I know, right? I never know where my mind will take me. Sometimes it goes to pretty crazy places. Do you write stories, or just poetry?

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