Where do people go
When they are dispossessed?
When the home they know
Is no longer seen as theirs,
When their beds are tossed out,
And those boxes beneath the stairs
Regarded as trash by the soulless ****
Whose only motive is greed?
I have seen images of them in a group,
Walking down a road to nowhere,
Or out on desert sand, wandering.
Where can they go and not be harassed
By owners with no sympathy?
What boat will carry them to another shore
Where they are met with friendship
And not seen as enemies?
How strange and terrible to see them,
All walking in the same way,
Heads down and shoulders bent,
Many carrying a child
Or remnants of a home enfolded.
When they reach borders,
They are stopped and questioned,
Crowded, as are sheep in a pen.
So many are turned away
And some, desperate they become,
Board small boats with promises
To take them to freedom,
Only to founder and sink,
So that the sea becomes
Their last, dark home.
Others consider themselves lucky
To find a tent or metal van
Which they must take away
From those with property,
And keep moving, herded
Like those same sheep,
Yet now almost wild,
Huddling together with strangers
Near a fire in vast and empty lands
That play slow and vivid sunsets
To soothe the rootless host?
They tell each other stories
Of their home or hard journeys,
Give counsel to evade the dogs
That prey on those who wander.
And on those nights in endless lands,
And a dome not veiled by earthly light,
But dazzling the wanderers
With millions of shimmering stars,
That sends dreams of others gone astray
And they lament their fate as their own,
As unknown brothers and sisters,
Who, bewildered, weep for them as well.
This built on itself from a worry about where the people go when they are old or lose their homes. I then had images of people in a similar dilemma, at borders, such as the U.S./Mexico one, or refugees in the Middle East, or those made "nomads" by economic collapse and the decision to live in tents or vans, out under the sky--free but vulnerable. Also, some of this was inspired by "Nomadland".