A homeless woman sits on the rain-drenched sidewalks on a cold day in San Francisco. Robert L. Terrell photo


Waiting For Housing

by George Wynn

A gentle lady with Parkinson’s
slept in dark alleyways
without curfew and
abandoned houses without walls
in lonely Cable Car Land
She’s not there anymore
a concerned young man
gave her his arm and
brought her to the hospital
from where she never returned

For Heaven’s Sake

by Claire J. Baker

I write words
to uplift the homeless
keep plying my pen
inking words across
the page as if I were
a sage with glowing script
a formula to help homeless
formally rise & fly
above the streets, beyond
sheets of dust, blankets
of smoggy stars
noxious exhaust of cars
pulling in my wake
on a cord of words
a horde of homeless, freeing them
however long for heaven’s sake.

Dancing in Jail

by Carol Denney

there was a homeless woman
who kept to herself
gently singing and dancing
we asked why she was here in jail
she smiled and said
it was a misunderstanding
and kept dancing


Street Meditation: Compassion

by Claire J. Baker

How different we are & how the same
wherever you go I too shall go.
I do & do not know your name,
so different we are & so the same
your cup & sign, I with shame
wondering if you’ll ever know
how much we differ yet are the same
that wherever you go I too shall go.

Starting from Scratch

by Mary Meriam

So high on a mountain
I build a tent
live with spiders
crawling on the floor
and my eyes, and a frog
in the pot of leaf tea.
No one’s around for miles
the wind brings rain
through the forest.
I am down to one potato.

Friendship Ring

by Mary Meriam

Please be my friend—always
And hold my hand—once in a while
I ask you humbly—within reason.
Please be loyal to me—within reason
Friends suffer—once in a while
But stand by me—always.
Please give my heart—within reason
A place to rest—always
A chance to fly—once in a while.