Litkicks Message Board Archive

beggar's ballad

Posted to Poetry


"I'm SORRY to BOTHER you, but IF you could GIVE me
just one MOMENT of your TIME, I am HOMELESS, and
any CHANGE that you could SPARE me would really HELP me to find a PLACE to SLEEP and SOMETHING to EAT,
I just WANT you to know that I really,
REALLY need your help. so PLEASE give me WHATEVER
change you have to SPARE."

(we're on the F Train; she needs to make at least two dollars to recover her initial investment; of course,
I'm a cold-hearted bastard, who's not going to give
her anything-- India taught me better than to be generous to demanding strangers. Meanwhile, there's the other part of me, the vesitgal remains of compassion-- I try to allay the sudden sense of guilt, by assuring myself that there must be a Program, somewhere, that would take care of this person if she only consigned herself to its structure...

but I know in my bones that the Program, even as it does exist, is a lie...
I know that it's ultimately the rule of the heart, with all of its bad luck, that brought her here... and I know very well that the heart doesn't follow a set of rules, regulations, decrees.

Her heart brought her here--

I should have given her something--

But of course, by now, it's too late--)