Although I’ve no house to call my home,
I live in the shelter of God’s gracious dome.
I don’t have a house full of food and drink,
But the food I receive makes me think
That though I am homeless, without much in hand,
I am still someone’s child and someone’s friend.
“Hey, get a job!” I’ve heard people say.
But it’s not quite that easy, ‘cause few will pay
Someone like me, with no current home,
Addicted to drugs, no clean clothes of my own.
Would you hire me to work by your side?
If not, then don’t judge me; I do have my pride.
My body is a prison, my spirit’s still free,
I am what I am; can you truly see me?
Don’t see the dirt on my clothes or my hair,
Don’t laugh, don’t sneer and please don’t stare.
The grime of the street has made me this way,
One hot shower can wash this away.
I am husband or wife, father or mother,
I am niece or nephew, or sister or brother.
You could be me, or so could another.
One bad choice can lead to one other.
So next time you see me, hands out in need,
Remember, like you, I breathe and I bleed.
I am one of the homeless, a face on the street,
Look into my eyes; don’t stare at my feet.
I am human like you, I laugh and I cry,
I’ve watched my street friends live and die.
I’ve lost much of what you hold so dear,
But I haven’t lost “me”—I’m still in here.
©2008 Cheryl Kaye Tardif
Note: I felt inspired to write this today, and it appeared first on Hope Mission's Facebook page. Although I haven't lived on the street, my brother Jason Kaye did. He lived and died on the streets of Edmonton, and he is always on my mind. I posted this poem here, because I hope it will inspire you. ~Cheryl
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