The Intermittent Volunteer’s Weblog

Befriending People in Dallas Who Are Homeless

‘I’m Invisible Man’ April 29, 2010

Filed under: homelessness,hunger,inspiration,middle-class housing crisis — Karen Shafer @ 1:59 pm

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Robin and Linda Williams and Their Fine Group

Once a year comes an event that a group of my friends and family look forward to with eager anticipation — a concert at Uncle Calvin’s Coffee House (Northpark Presbyterian Church) by Robin and Linda Williams and Their Fine Group.  You may know them from frequent appearances on the Garrison Keillor Show on National Public Radio, and from the Prairie Home Companion movie.

Our grand kids have been raised on their CD’s, and this year they were old enough to attend.  Friends got there early and got seats right by the stage, and it was magical to watch my three grandchildren sit spellbound looking up at the group, listening to the music and singing along to some of this wonderful band’s songs.

After the concert, Robin was kind enough to give me permission to include the words to one of the songs from their Buena Vista album on this blog.

Thanks, Robin and Linda, for being a major highlight in our year!!!


‘I’m Invisible Man’


I’m Invisible Man

You see me I’m not there

Unnoticed so no one cares

But I’ve got a driver’s license from Birmingham

I keep it to remind me who I am

Cause I’m Invisible Man


I’m Invisible Man

My box says this end up

It’s where I sleep and keep my stuff

In a country of cardboard and cement

A shrine to the Great Embarrassment

I’m Invisible Man


I’m Invisible Man

I ain’t lost I’m just misplaced

Just cause you can’t see my face

You judge me for a life misspent

For being two pay checks shy of rent

I’m Invisible Man


I’m Invisible Man

I’m your sister; I’m your mother

I live in hiding, tucked under cover

I’ll do anything for a ride in your car

For a little spare change, for a drink in a bar

I’m Invisible Man


I’m Invisible Man

You don’t know me, you know who I’m not

I fought in Vietnam and Iraq

I don’t sleep at night I can’t stand my dreams

I’ve fallen into the vast unseen

I’m Invisible Man


I’m Invisible Man

I live in Tampa and LA

And every town along the way

From New York City to the San Francisco Bay,

My home is Shanty Town, USA

I’m Invisible Man



Vision of a Man April 17, 2010

Filed under: criminalization of the homeless,healing,homelessness,hunger,inspiration — Karen Shafer @ 8:57 pm

Saturday, April 17, 2010

“…to love Him in the distressing disguise of the poorest of the poor.”  ~~Mother Teresa

Vision of a Man

I watched a man move down the walk,

A man whom I call friend –

A lonely soul who lives outdoors,

Whose struggles never end.

Belongings in three grocery sacks,

A clean shirt (for today),

His long hair streaming down his back…

I watched him walk away.

‘Why can’t I help him, Lord?’ I cried.

‘Why can’t I fix his pain?

There’s so much I would like to do…’

Yet there he goes,


Just then, the world –

The street, the cars –

(As I stood and watched him go,)

Became a field of diamonds…

And I somehow saw

The Whole.

For just one instant –

Sparkling, clear –

When Time stood still,

And God was Here,

A gentle voice

Into my ear…


‘It is so much deeper than that.’

And I saw…

My friend is Perfect,

Though broken he appears.

I saw…

My friend is Sacred,

Exactly as he is.

He’s not in need of fixing

Does not call for repair,

Or people looking through him

As if he wasn’t there.

He doesn’t need


Like a twisted knot of twine.

Does not require


To walk a different line.

He does not need

A drug, a rule, a class, a bath, a fine.

What he requires

Is caring,

And the privilege

Is mine.

Karen Shafer

c 4/17/10