Street Boy

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Mummy has dark circles around her eyes again. 

I trace them with my tiny fingers, and she winches in pain and pulls my hand away. 

I feel burning anger within, and this time it’s here to stay

She pulls me between her arms and squeezes me while caressing my hair. 

Daddy storms inside and throws a heavy chair.

Mummy screams for me to run outside the door

I hesitate but she pushes me forward and begs louder

I run towards the streets and never look back. 

I abruptly wake after reliving the nightmare that is my past. 

I hold my shaking hands out for a dollar, to a child and her mother. They stare then hurry away, leaving my hands empty.

Let’s go home, they say. If only they knew how their words affected me, for I have no place to call home. 

The only home I’ve known are the concrete floors I surrender my body to. 

The ones that welcome me home at the going down of the sun, the ones that leave my body aching in pain to remind me of where my home is. 

I wish for a passing stranger to welcome me into their home, to love and care for me so I won’t be alone.

I looked no older than the passing child, what differs is that, to her, this is a foreign land. 

She’ll go back to her home as planned, but this will forever be my home, the only one I will understand.

For hours and hours, people walk by, they look away from me as I cry. They walk with children no older than I, but they still don’t care, and I wonder why.  

Some people yell at me calling me scum, others yell ‘get away from here, you filthy bum’. 

When it’s raining people watch me as I search for shelter. Perhaps they think I’m just a stupid child playing in the rain. Little do they know what they deem to be a game is my reality. 

The cold air strikes my fragile body causing me to shiver. I long for someone to take me away from the rain but no one would consider. 

I rest my head on my concrete pillow, dreaming that I’m in a warm bed, but what my body is feeling tells that I can only find this bed in my dreams. 

I wish to escape this life, but where can I go for I have no place to call home.

 

These stories were written in our Factory Feedback program, which was created with, and generously supported by, the Dusseldorp Forum.