March Poetry of the Streets

Sleepy bored despairing,/ gray beard, gray jacket,/ blue jeans,/ blue cap./ Beloved Labrador’s gentle gaze/ lends solace./ Handcrafted sign requests help;/ holding few coins,/ your box yawns open/ walking stick sighs./ Resting beside canine friend/ you breathe.

A homeless man and his dog hope for food in San Francisco. Robert L. Terrell photo

 

Street Takes Toll Fast

by George Wynn

Young woman

realizes her dream

becomes a beauty queen

thinks she has it made

after a decade

of depression and rage

she dies of old age

on the street

 

The First-Time Homeless:

by Claire J. Baker

They need to decide on:

what corners

which benches

overnite shelters

sidewalk vents

possible doorways

unhoused buildings

darkest alleyways

safety nets (if any)

volunteer services

soup kitchens

when to speak

when to shut up

when & where to sleep

rainy day overheads

survival!

 

Beyond key decisions

there’s not much to do

but wait a century

for social change

or get a fab job

though none are

available.

 

the children are gone

by Randy Fingla

negotiations

guarantee ceasefires

but the burning continues

the rainforests

the icecaps

scorched smiles branded

on dead infant faces

unreported on conglomerate TV

everywhere the hunger

of the impoverished

who die young

for the same reason

A homeless woman endures a rainstorm on a wet, cold sidewalk in San Francisco. Robert L. Terrell photo

 

After Barbara’s Sermon

by Claire J. Baker

“Shine, dear one, shine” —

a phrase one might whisper

to a hurt lover,

to a homeless mother,

to a baby at christening,

to a friend who has

just passed on.

 

Or this is a phrase to keep

within, near the surface

to kindle kindness, like

 

hear me, believe me

when my eyes urge,

“Shine, dear one, shine.”

 

Man Alive

by George Wynn

Wind roars

he clutches blankets

between two closed doors

God make it pause

 

Out of the blue

college notebooks flash

What it’s like being homeless?

Try it you won’t like it

Anyway jive ass grad

students  mean well

 

You gotta be crazy

or piss poor or both

Why don’t they scream it

between this damn howling wind?

 

Man alive I wish this was a dream

anyway thank you God

for making the wind stop

 

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