Saturday, September 19, 2009

I'm hungry

This weeks prompt over at Sunday Scriblings is Hungry.

What shall I sing next? I tried to stop them with All by Myself and they walked on by. I tried singing Walk on By, and guess what, they walked on by.

Don’t smile, please. I’m not trying to be funny - I’m hungry, and right now all I have in the guitar case in front of me on the pavement is a handful of coppers, a single pound coin and an empty wrapper from a bar of chocolate. I’d die for a bar of chocolate right now, and all I have is an empty wrapper which someone threw there.

I know what you are thinking. ‘He’s on drugs or booze and if I gave him some money he’d just use it to pay for his habit’. Ok, so I look a little scruffy. Actually I look very scruffy, dirty even.I
t’s alright for you strutting past dressed up like a picture from a magazine and pretending not to notice me. Have you seen these shoes? They let the water in when it rains. See this shirt? It’s all I have to keep me dry when the heavens open. A few minutes ago I saw you and your friends tucking into a McDonalds. You probably didn’t even need it. I bet you weren’t even hungry. But me? I’m bloody starving here, and if I don’t get a few quid in my guitar case soon I’m going to have another day without a meal.

I recognise him – the guy over there with the smug look on his face and a can of beer in his hand. He won’t remember me. But I remember him. Last time I saw him I was Jack-the-lad and he was sleeping rough. I helped him out. I even gave him a room for the night once and made sure he had a square meal inside him. Now we’ve changed places and he stands there as if he doesn’t know who I am. Oh look, he’s spotted me and he’s swaggering off with his gang of friends! I’d like to say I don’t care, but deep down I do.

I’m hungry, I’m so hungry. Think positive. I can do it. It wasn’t long ago I could play my music to a packed club and I would go home with a pocket full of loot and a smile on my face. Stand up. Smile. Sing you heart out. Give ‘em a dose of soul music. Show ‘em Elvis lives. I will eat tonight. I will, I will, I will. Please God, please say I will.

This weeks prompt at Carry On Tuesday is now ready and waiting for you! Click on the badge below to take a look!


  1. rushes in with a peanut butter and banana sandwich, shoves it down Keith's throat, grabs him and runs down to the corner and runs him through a carwash.

    Tucks a wad of cash in his pockets and takes him home and makes him a bed on the pull out couch, there ya go mate. Sleep well.

  2. Good read Keith. Yes I know there are lots of people who are hungry out there but some of them are not and just looking for easy handouts. Sad and very wrong to do for the genuine needy. I have been caught out. If you help they just want more and more with no giving back. I think a lot of it harks back to lack of mental health help available.

  3. This tugged at my heart. Nothing pains me more than to see people on the street who are starving. I wish for nothing more than to be able to take them in, provide them with a roof over their head, food in their belly, and trust to inspire.

    There are those who are looking to take advantage of people, but I never assume that the one's i give money to are doing that. If they are, the guilt is on them. Not me. I don't want to walk through life being suspicious of everyone because there are those that truly are starving and who am I to think otherwise. I hope lots of people read your post and it makes them stop and think the next time they walk by a homeless person - maybe they will give them something instead of a cold shoulder.

  4. Well its a very true scene
    Often i have seen
    fate at its game again
    the divide growing steady in pain
    the a life plain
    struggles with nothing to gain
    a sight, here, so common!
    for sure, i did, read this with emotion

  5. I’ll split you with Missy, give you an alternate place to crash if you’ll play for me like you used to play to packed clubs ;-)

    Smiles aside, this was a neat angle, Keith. I enjoyed it very much.

  6. I got a pull out couch too and there is left over meatloaf and mashed potatoes on the stove. Between us all we could take care of him, but there are so many more. I'm afraid we will see more and more of this and at least he still has his guitar..
    Thanks for this Keith.

  7. Nice post. It is so easy to walk by the homeless on the street or to just dismiss them all as druggies or alcoholics but everyone does have a different story and your pots does a great job of making that come alive.

  8. Kieth - obviously you have been following me around. No alms for the poor from this chap. Am I stingy? I give to 4 charities and I give to the homeless associations. I donate to the food shelters and I have even offered jobs to the needy. But now I feel guilty. I will start dropping some money in the hat. Thanks for the kick in the butt.

  9. A touching, heart-wrenching piece. Too often people pass by the less fortunate and ignore them when they could well afford to help out.

    Great writing!