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Homeless: I Could Be You

December 5, 2013 by  
Filed under Donna Sue Berry, Poetry

for post on homeless: i could be you

I drove right through the changing light
Horns blowing as I went.
I had to make just one more store,
Before the day was spent.

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I swerved in time to miss a man
Who held a cardboard sign.
A homeless man, who'd work for food,
Thank God, I'd braked in time.

.

I parked my ride and looked around,
Then groaned at what I saw.
A sea of cars parked everywhere.
The world was at the mall!

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Oh Lord, I thought, it comes again.
The season of excess.
When want and greed are king and queen,
And reign in selfishness.

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Then smiling wide I grabbed my purse.
This was my time to shop,
And for the homeless on the street
I had no time for thought!

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But just outside the store front door
A homeless woman sat.
She was dirty and disgusting
With a child upon her lap.

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She looked at me with pain filled eyes,
She seemed to read my mind.
“I could be you,” she mouthed the words,
“Some place, some other time.”

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I turned my head, I walked right past.
My conscience now was sore.
With every purchase that I made
I'd see her at the door.

.

Then passing by a manger scene
I had to stare awhile,
For the Virgin and her baby
Were the woman and her child!

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Remembering that pain filled look,
And how she'd read my mind,
“I could be you,” she mouthed the words
“Some place, some other time.”

.

With no more thought I turned around
My Christmas I would share!
But the woman and her baby,
They were no longer there.

.

Just a note upon the sidewalk.
A scribbled cardboard sign,
“I could be you,” she wrote to me.
“Some place, some other time.”

.

Donna Sue Berry
Written on Christmas 2010

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Art for this post Homeless: I Could be You: Obdachlos (Homeless), Fernand Pelez, by 1883, PD-US author's life plus 70 years or less, published in the U.S. prior to January 1, 1923, Wikimedia Commons.

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About Donna Sue Berry

Donna Sue Berry is a passionate writer and poet, wife, mother of two, and grandmother of nine, from the American Heartland of central Oklahoma. She and her husband Joel share their time between Oklahoma and Montana. Her early writing began with romantic poetry during junior high school years; but, not until returning to school at age 48 did her poetry deepen to truly express her great love for her Catholic faith. Proud of her rich Oklahoma heritage and ancestors who made the 1889 Oklahoma Land Run, her current book project is "Catholic Poems from the Heart of a Red Dirt Oklahoma Girl." Her website is https://catholicpoemsfromtheheartofareddirtoklahomagirl.com.

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