On the Corner of Skid Row and Main

Painting by Ben Barker

On the Corner of Skid Row and Main

And nothing now remained to do
But begin the game anew.

AE Houseman “Terence, This Is Stupid Stuff”

The cost of trying to make it go away
Is the post beer binge sour bloated belly.
Pushing my cart along Savannah Highway,
It feels as if my heart is pumping jelly,

Not blood, thick sludge. Dehydrated, ever thirsty,
Broke and broken, palsied, badly in need of a drink,
I have my cardboard sign at the ready,
“HOMELESS VETEREN BEYOND THE BRINK.”

Acid reflux, crackers for lunch. How about a handout?
Unfriendly faces roll on by. If stopped by a light,
Most avoid eye contact, though occasionally they shout
Obscenities at me, cursing the depressing shambling sorry sight.