Homeless Joe

ImageOn the sidewalk of a street busy with commerce, a man named ‘Homeless Joe’ always sat with his legs sprawled out and his back against the wall of a brick building behind. He held a cup out with a shaky hand, asking friendly passerby’s for some change. Typically, he would get passed up, yet occasionally he did indeed receive a quarter or two. He didn’t mind being looked down upon, he didn’t mind being viewed as a nuisance. What he did mind, however, was the occasional snob who would point at him and angrily yell, ‘Get a job!’

One day, when this particular demand was made of him yet again, Homeless Joe finally stood up, brushed his clothes off, stretched his arms up above his head, then started break-dancing. Everybody walking by stopped to watch, and a crowd quickly built. After Homeless Joe finished spinning on his head, he stood up again, then moved with hops and skips as he sung out all to hear.

“Ain’t no love for a guy like me,

got wrinkled sleeves and lyme disease,

fifteen bucks is all I need, to get me through the rest of the week.

Ain’t no love for a guy like me, got shit stains in these very undies.

I got this thing called depression, I hate that shit but it’s relentless.

You see I had a wife, she was pretty damn nice, but that pretty lady done up and died.

Ain’t no love for a guy like me, grace of God only gets me pennies,

Got no shops lookin’ for a bum, got no restaurants who want me to come.

Homeless Joe why can’t you see? Why can’t you work like the rest of we?

Well shit I tell ya, shit I say, I used to work damn near every-damn-day.

Got a problem, wouldn’t you know, the doctor said it’s vertigo!

I get dizzy when I get stressed, I get headaches and pain in my chest.

Can’t do much but sit and sleep, can’t get rid of that disease.

AIn’t no love for a guy like me, ain’t no woman who I can please.

I don’t want much folks no I don’t, I just want you to up and go.

I barely live and soon I’ll die, but as for now my time is fine.

Just let me be a slug for free, and let me die in a quiet sleep.

Don’t expect too much from you, just doin’ what I’m supposed too.

‘Cause it’s gettin’ hard to keep on livin’, when every persons gotta keep on winnin’.

I fuckin’ lost and don’t I know it,

I’m pretty certain my clothes clearly show it.

So please move on and all keep on thinkin’,

Don’t worry ’bout me and how I’m livin’.

I know I distress you all much,

I know I repulse those whom I touch.

So until I die please let me be,

‘Cause there ain’t no love for a guy like me.

– Thomas M. Watt


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