A nameless nomad,
I dwell on dirty streets,
A cardboard palace for me
and my fatherless son.
I wander my kingdom,
a rolling tumbleweed of narcotics and regret,
sidewalk slabs dotted with trash and gum wads,
black specks on a piece of peerless marble.
I am the queen of my crosswalk corner
And all the other rootless ones pay homage to me,
Gaping at my ragged beauty,
Rolling down their windows to give me treasures,
Dollars, cents, a whispered “God bless you.”
A treasury of candid souls, the daily price of pity.
I stand beneath the stop sign, a homeless
in an asphalt niche,
until one of my worshipers
gives me a turkey sandwich
And stale potato chips.
I give it to my son,
And he eats everything.
I hope he stays hungry.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.