The Homeless Have No Friends, by Charlie Bottle at

The Homeless Have No Friends

The Homeless Have No Friends

written by: Charlie Bottle



I am nobody, invisible, unseen,
of the lowest varna, I am stratified,
disenfranchised, untouchable,
I am homeless, unrentable
I lack an address,
I have no identification,
save that I’m homeless,
side eyed people see me,
like dogs, they avert my gaze,
for they fear I may panhandle them,
or worse steal their purse,
when they dip to extricate
their rare, priceless dollar bill,
to hand it at arm’s length,
and looks that speak loudly,
“Don’t make this a habit!”
Truckstop groomed, gas station bathrooms,
McDonald’s don’t like us there,
it frightens them, patrons.
The homeless have no friends.

A homeless poet, I see society,
I acquaint the library,
to use the computers to write verse,
the librarians know me,
they look beyond my unkempt self,
so long as I stay within their view.
I write letters to the editor,
to the mayor about our plight,
the need for homeless shelters,
of those who sleep on stoops at night.
I write to the congressman,
who never sees the disenfranchised me,
I write of the health needs of those like me,
that we have no one who cares,
for non-taxpayers like me,
I write to the senators,
I tell them of our plight,
I ask them why they won’t fight,
for the poor, the homeless like me.
The homeless have no friends.

The homeless have no choice,
they have no address, no ID,
so they can’t get a job or rent,
they have holes in their history,
or recent employment dates
both of which HR hates,
so they have no money,
save food stamps and an EBT card,
In checkout lines at the local Aldi,
people scowl when they see me,
pull out the blue card to pay,
for the paltry groceries.
before the 2008 housing market crash,
I had a job and family,
my wife lost her job first,
then I lost mine,
and slowly we lost all our money,
next, our neighbors and friends
after the foreclosed sign went up,
and then the banks evicted us,
My wife divorced me,
and went to live with her parents.
The homeless have no friends.

The homeless have no friends,
the social workers they care,
but will not take you home,
they do what they can to help
try to get you a job, or an appointment
visit with a doctor, where the desk clerks
ask, “insurance card, or Medicaid?”
When the government shuts down,
we take a slow hit as services slowdown,
the homeless have no friends,
no fancy restaurants to entertain,
no yachts or golf courses to throw parties
and charge thousands for an evening
for the privilege of our company,
we don’t live in towers,
with golden commodes and showers,
we are flesh and blood like you.
The homeless have no friends.

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