Tag Archives: homeless

Threadbare

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Threadbare

[Written on December 10, 2013, this was posted to my first attempt at creating a blog.  It has a good message and I wanted to share it once again.  Image Credit]

Threadbare

“This, to me, represents love…” The letter was written to explain why they had to divorce. She shook her head in irritation. Her soon-to-be-ex-husband had no concept of love and staying strong through the hard times. She continued lost in thought when she almost tripped over the child curled up against the wall in the street.

Streaks of dirt only highlighted the deeper dirt that covered the child. His clothing was threadbare, the patches in the knees worn through. He didn’t meet her eyes. She saw many passed him by giving him no notice. But this was a child. All children deserved notice.

Kneeling down, she asked him, “Where are your parents?” He tilted his head as if uncertain what she said. He tugged at his ear and then she realized he was using a rudimentary sign language. She only drove into town to straighten out some legal matters. “Legal matters”…such a cold way to refer to the dissolution of a marriage. Still, she could not ignore this child. Decision made, she held out her hand.

The boy studied the hand with its neatly painted nails. He could not recall a clean hand offered his way. People on the streets would drag him along, making sure he made it to a shelter to get something to eat…most of the time. Sometimes, though, he hid amongst the trash, disappearing. She shook her hand with a little impatience. He saw her mouth move, knowing she was trying to tell him something. Finally, he slowly took her hand.

She hesitated at first before fully grasping the hand. She could feel the greasy grasp slide over her fingers. She fought against her instinct. She told herself, “It’s just dirt! It’s just dirt!” She pushed back the desire to put a handkerchief between their hands. Shaking away the physical discomfort, she continued walking down the sidewalk. The attorney wouldn’t be far and he could advise her about the child.

“Odd,” she thought. “My problem with dirt…with unclean things is what pushed my husband and me apart. Even…getting personal makes me physically ill. Yet, I am holding the hand of this dirty child.” She looked over at him as he squirmed a little and caught him scratching. “…this dirty, LICE RIDDEN child.” Reaching the entrance to the attorney, she turned towards him.

“I know you can’t understand me, but you need to trust me.” He stared at her uncomprehendingly, sniffing. Then he took his hand and dragged it across the offending nose. Fighting nausea, she shakily took that hand back into hers as they climbed the steps. “I can do this…I can do this…” she continued to chant as they opened the door.

“Hello, Mrs. Sanders. You’re a few minutes ear…” The receptionist cut her statement short. “Oh..oh…ummm…what’s this?”

“This is a who…and I’m not sure but we need to figure something out.” The boy stared out the window as rain began to fall. At least, he thought, I am dry for now.

Written in response to Finish That Thought. The prompt: This, to me, represents love.

I is for Indigent

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I

She pushed her cart every day up and down the streets of the small town.  If you asked the town leaders, they’d probably deny a homeless population.  However, Ingrid would beg to differ.  After years of struggling to fit in, she walked out of her life around five years ago.

Mark had once again come home to find the house in disarray and Ingrid practically comatose from the meds the doctor had her on.  Sighing, he began to straighten the room.  He didn’t know how to reach her when she got to this state.  She was so out of reach, lost in her own world.  Rocking back and forth, she rambled on about nonsense.  Thankfully, they didn’t have children, he thought then instantly regretted it.  He fought resentment.  He loved her but she was hard to love sometimes.

One day, through the haze of her illness, Ingrid saw his struggles.  Oh, Mark, she thought.  She hoped her letter would convey her love, would release him to find happiness.  Taking what little money she had stashed, she stumbled towards the bus.  The ticket to anywhere landed her in this tiny town where she disappeared among the indigent.

At one time, she considered herself intelligent.  She had a Ph.D. in Information Systems.  However, shortly after she completed her studies, she started becoming more and more confused.  The illness progressed and the treatments weren’t helping.  She felt lost, somewhere in between reality and delusion.

The cart stopped suddenly, dragging her from her fragmented memories.  Focusing on the interruption, she realized a handbag lay on the ground.  It was rather nice, beaded with a chain for a handle.  Rescuing it from the wheel of the cart, she opened it and saw that it belonged to a Beatrice Bevins.  Ms. Bea would bring sandwiches to the alleys.  She never forgot them.  How long had it been since she had visited?  The fog of time didn’t reveal any answers but Ingrid knew something was quite wrong.

Gathering her courage, she walked in a very determined line to the police station.  Looking quietly towards her cart, she sighed as she walked away from it.  Hopefully it would be there when she returned.  She entered the police station.

“Hello.  I’m Ingrid Liva.  I found this in the alley next to the library and I think it may be important.”

When they realized what she held, they began to buzz around her, some taking her statement, some seeking to discover what they could from the handbag, and others leaving to check out the alley by the library.  Ingrid was no longer invisible.

homeless

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