word-poem:\\ people who are poor

People who are poor

are people, who are poor
and walk a lot, or sometimes take the bus
I was taught to feel not one of them

even though I am often unemployed and broke
and have been homeless
and spend hours roaming streets
of various cities
window-gazing, lacking stability
considering new and old business
alleyways and trash
thinking about nation-states collapsing, keeping an eye
out for middle-aged men jogging
in their expensive running shoes, recounting the steps
of CPR, I’m a nurse after all
and you would think I could find work
if I were willing to break
my back, or stuff my opinions
or take more abuse, which at the moment
I’m not so inclined to do, besides being passed over
and over
being the age of my age

I have my routines
writing, walking, radio
also reading of course and as I walk
I imagine other ways to live, the way
others live, I shudder, just today
I heard a song that filled me
with the pain of remembering joy
tender memento of how things end up

seeing a fresh-painted apartment building
probably senior housing
all the blinds shut, green canvas awnings
at every pane
I wonder why, if I want to look in
they don’t want to look out

last month I spent 269 dollars
to have a poster framed
that has been rolled up in various garages
since 1995, from a street fair in Miami
signed by the artist
with his unique backwards signature
so how could I judge anyone

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