bag life (NPM2017 16)

 

image.adapt.480.low.sf_homeless_hp2.jpg

what do homeless people carry in their bags

the bags in carts on bikes over weary shoulders

the bags that mark them as without

outside unhoused wanders carrying

their lives in bags

do they carry their important papers

do they carry the warmer sweater

when the sun is beating down

but the promise of winter is

one that is always kept

do they carry

the last scraps of their

membership in society captialist

or maybe their Sunday best in hopes

on needing to be dressed up

ready to become one of

those inside whose lives

are not confined to bags

rather they are free to

consume more than they need

stepping over the unwashed

on their way to inside

do the homeless

carry their last Christmas

warm with family

looking at another year

together once upon a time

do they carry the what if’s

and why me’s or were they left

behind with changes of shoes

clean underwear and warm beds

do they carry mementoes of a life

without so much baggage

what do homeless people carry in the bags

do they carry their dreams shattered

and broken down so they fit

inside black plastic stack

neatly in dirty bins

beside tents under

freeway overpasses as passers-by

pass by on their way

to their cozy inside

spaces far away

from bag life

About Ayodele Nzinga, MFA, PhD

I create; therefore I am.
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