homeless · poets united

Warm your hands #poetry #homeless

homeless

Warm your hands

its so cold

offer kindness

stories told

how many lives

have been touched

warming station

food, beds and such

 

I dont often promote submission opportunities on my blog. But this submission is the kind where your poetry (and a mere $3 per poem) helps people during the winter months.

Here are the details:

The English Department and Library at Blue Mountain Community College in Pendleton, Oregon, invite you to submit poems to our first annual poetry contest supporting the Pendleton Warming Station.
The Pendleton Warming Station is a place for those without homes to stay overnight when the temperatures drop below 32 degrees. PWS is open from November 1st to March 31st each year.
To submit, please PayPal $3 per poem (for up to 5 poems) to:
WarmingStationPoemsATyahooDOTcom and  email poems in a single Word Document attachment to WarmingStationPoemsATyahooDOTcom .
1 page limit per poem. Winner and 5 honorable mentions will be published on the BMCC Library blog. All proceeds will go to the Pendleton Warming Station. We will accept submissions November 24th through December 24th. Winners and Honorable Mentions will be announced January 1st.
Please send any questions to WarmingStationPoemsATyahooDOTcom

 

 

Elderly · Haiku · homeless · Photography · Poetry

Wabi Sabi #lonely #homeless #haiku

cropped-sail.jpg

alone with my fears

oars barely strike the surface

boat is shoaled

*

can you spare a dime

my eyes hunger for the past

my cart empty

homeless

 

 

 

This week’s Carpe Diem Haiku Kai writing challenge is to try our hand at Wabi Sabi.

Kristjaan breaks down the two concepts:

“Sabi: As fascinated as Westerners have become with the word, the Japanese have maintained for centuries that no one can really, truly comprehend what sabi really is and thus, they change its definition according to their moods. Bill Higginson, in The Haiku Handbook, calls sabi – “(patina/loneliness) Beauty with a sense of loneliness in time, akin to, but deeper than, nostalgia.” Suzuki maintains that sabi is “loneliness” or“solitude” but that it can also be “miserable”, “insignificant”, and “pitiable”, “asymmetry” and “poverty”. Donald Keene sees sabi as “an understatement hinting at great depths”.

The Technique of Wabi:

The twin brother to sabi who has as many personas can be defined as “(WAH-BEE)-poverty- Beauty judged to be the result of living simply. Frayed and faded Levis have the wabi that bleached designer jeans can never achieve.”

Our World · Photography · Poetry · poets united · Social issues

Can’t You See the Hunger? #poetry #homeless

Your large eyes

wide open like saucers

empty hands

longing to be held

one look into the world

you can feel it

“Hunger”

a gasp

needing to be expelled

*

Have your lips

tasted more than sawdust?

Has your heart been over filled

with warmth?

Do you circle life

in desperation

ever seeking shelter from

life’s storm

*

Raise your head

never stop your seeking

don’t give way

to darkness and despair

there’s a sunrise, golden

that is peaking

over hope’s horizon

where you’ll be held and fed

I’m trying to address homelessness from many angles. This poem looks straight into the eyes of those who have so little. There is much a person can endure with hope. Without hope however even the best of situations can readily disintegrate.

Inspired by Poet’s United Mid Week Motif Prompt Hunger.

Images © L. Moon 2014

Our World · Social issues

Hard to Understand until you’ve been – Homeless #homeless #society

The Dilemma: Homelessness

Most of us have encountered the homeless from time to time:

There is Ed, the guy who stands on the median where you turn left everyday to go to work. His worn out cardboard sign says “Will work for money. God Bless.”

What you don’t know is how many homeless vie for that spot on the median. Ed comes out as early as 5 am because he can make $100 an hour (at least during the rush hours). Where I lived, these folks (in the prime time spots) were making $2000 each month.

Then there’s Sylvia who meanders around a strip mall with a withered look to match her sign that says “anything will help.”

I was taught years ago not to give money to a homeless person because they could go out and buy drugs or alcohol. So someone who sees Sylvia goes to a fast food place and get her a meal.  Sylvia, when no one appears to be looking, throws the meals away. Over the years all the people I have given food to have gratefully eaten it. I always ask the person what they would like before I buy it.

Marissa sat in front of McDs in the pouring rain with her baby. Three women in passing asked if she needed help. “I have nowhere to stay.” The women while eating their meal inside called a local hotel and arranged for Marissa to stay in the hotel for several nights. Marissa shares a 3 bedroom apartment with her boyfriend and her three children; each month she tries to line up several nights stay at a hotel just to “get away in someplace nice.”

All three of these people share something in common – they all would something better than they presently have. They deal with their dilemma by appealing to society.

Ed wants to earn money to pay the bills for himself and perhaps family.

Sylvie is also trying to get food, money, clothing. What if Sylvie would have liked a vegan sandwich?

Marissa has an apartment. Is she hoping/dreaming of a nicer lifestyle?

Is that wrong? How would you deal with not having food, money, or a place that you enjoy living in?

Maslow shows that the homeless of our world are living in the bottom rung. This is (at times) below where the poor of our world live.

hierarchy

Why I am going to write a series of articles:

I became friends with a poet because of a poem I wrote about being homeless. As a homeless person, he was angered by my passionate viewpoint stating that “you cannot  write unless you can understand.”

I do understand: I have been homeless three times. Twice in my youth and once much more recently. You never would have known it (I never held a sign around my neck) and I had a car that I lived in. This last time I possessed nothing except two children and generosity from a number people who did not know me (before).

I understand the heart of the homeless;  much of my life has been spent in serving these people. Many of these folks don’t carry a sign but are lost. They are a people who have no place to go and all of society’s “welcome signs” are turned off. They are often busy helping one of their own or others.

 Image was created from other similar renditions of Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs and breaks down the 5 levels to very simple terms. © L. Moon 2014

a to z · Photography · Poetry

Inspired By Emily #atozchallenge #poetry #photography #homeless #napowrimo

rain-on-bird4

“Hope” is the thing with feathers
BY EMILY DICKINSON

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –

And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –

I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.

*******

Offer Relief   L. Moon (2013)

Oh lonely one out in the storm

I wish to share your plight

for as you fade against the gray

fight cold against the night

***

I wish to bring you home again

a place so safe and warm

please follow follow  close to me

I promise you no harm

***

I cry and notice everyday

the ones without a coat

I will to give them something warm

mostly give them hope

***

I entreat upon these words so few

you join in hand with me

and make the call for those who can’t

engender, make a plea

****

homeless man by Sam

A2Z-2013-BADGE-001Small_zps669396f9 (1)

Nautilus

 

Also sharing this with Wordless Wednesday

Emily Dickinson: “‘Hope’ is the Thing with Feathers” from The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson, edited by Thomas H. Johnson. Copyright 1945, 1951, 8 1955, 1979, 1983 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College.

Photography : “Rain on Bird” L. Moon 2007 (copyright)

Homeless Man by Sampac attributed work shared/ copyright Creative Commons

Our World · Social issues

I Shed a Tear #lyrics #poetry #world

I shed a tear

for the heartbreak in our world

I shed a tear

for all the things left undone

I shed a tear

for  little hands with no holds

I shed a tear

for small feet that are cold

****

Life may seem so simple

but for the sufferer  only pain

so I shed a tear

oh I shed a tear

for those who cannot come

out of the rain

***

I shed a tear

for  all the ways that  I’ve failed

I shed a tear

tho at times to no avail

I shed a tear

for the hands I did not hold

I shed a tear

for stories left untold

****

Life may seem so simple

when we first make our start

I shed a tear

oh I shed a tear

for the shards in my heart

I shed a tear

yes I shed a tear

there’s still hope for new starts

As a singer, my singing was always compared to Carly Simon. I have never thought that the songs I have written reflected her but I do believe this one does in a rudimentary sense. As an advocate, I aspire to give a hand of hope to the downtrodden. May it never be too late to help the little ones.

Here’s to all those tears that need to be recycled to water the pain in our world

Our World · Social issues · Writers

Nothing But Words #poetry #homeless

homeless

Do you realize

that some of us

eat food from a can?

No not the kind you open

the kind you pull

refuse

with your hand

I didn’t chose

cold loneliness

a life of no address

a closet in my car

atop my  college degree

oh isnt life a mess

but who cares

do you want to see

the list of things I’ve done

the families, children

whom I’ve helped

yes I have  aided some

the system I assure

it doesn’t care

I’m a number

they’d wish they’d lost

I’ve paid so many dues

there’s nothing left

do you know what  this has cost

and so my friends

words it seems

are all that I have left

stories

and at times a verse

I can’t speak the word ” bereft”