Trifecta Writing Challenge – They Live Among Us

They live among us.
Someone’s brother
huddled in a doorway.
Someone’s  son asleep on a bench.
Someone’s daughter
standing on a corner
hand outstretched
looking for change.
They forage through dumpsters
seeking scraps of food.

They live among us.
We walk past them
avoiding contact with
those hollow eyes
that  lost hope in humanity.
We want to believe
we would never find
ourselves in that dark place.
We would never let
the world crush our spirits.

They live among us.
They are the ghosts
bereft of the promise
that the best is yet to come.
But what haunts us
is the glimpse
of the singular truth
of their wretched existence.
They are surrounded by people,
yet utterly alone.

This was my response to Trifecta’s “wretched” challenge.



36 thoughts on “Trifecta Writing Challenge – They Live Among Us

  1. Love this! I don’t care who wins the challenge, I’m just enjoying reading the posts.
    I found this very haunting, and look forward to reading it again later after the sun goes down.
    Great job, Sandy!

  2. You have a great way with words. Thank you for the inspiration that will remind me to see the unseen and try more to care for those less fortunate.

  3. I particularly liked the final image “They are surrounded by people,
    yet utterly alone” as the thing that haunts us the most about the homeless.

  4. Great job!
    I got inspired on 28th to have a bash at the same challenge, but rushed off so enthusiastically that I forgot to thank you for drawing my attention to it.

  5. Thanks for linking up with us. This is beautiful. I’ve read this several times already and I love it more every time I do. You’ve captured a lot in that short poem and it’s an excellent response to our prompt. I agree with Jester, it’s a powerful last line. Hope you can join us over the weekend.

    If you have a couple of minutes, the ‘Meet Your Fellow Trifectans’ tab on the site gives you the chance to get to know a bit about the other writers who take part and also gives you a chance to introduce yourself to them.

  6. “They are surrounded by people,
    yet utterly alone.”
    This is perfect for your poem, how I often feel, so universal. Many chose to write about the homeless, but I think your poem is really good.

    • Thank you, Les. I don’t see many homeless people in my little community, but I took a trip to Southern California last November and was stunned by the number of homeless people I saw. I haven’t been able to get those images out of my mind.

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