Monday, May 21, 2012

Larry's Not Home

Larry's Not Home

Larry's not home today.
He is in a dumpster behind the fancy restaurant
you know, the one on the other side
of town.

His cat found a rat to eat so he's happy.
He's sleeping now so don't wake him.
Larry has a college degree.
He used to have a family.

He recently found a nice blue blanket.
It was fine except for a couple holes.
Blue is Larry's favorite color.
He got some candles from the homeless shelter.

Larry tried to live a normal life.
He couldn't find a job.
If he found one he couldn't keep it.
Hard to get a job with no address and no phone number.

People think Larry is lazy.
Larry is not lazy.
Staying alive every day is hard work
when you have nothing and nowhere to go.

Some people give him money.
Some give him scornful looks.
Some don't even see him.
He is like a ghost walking around the streets.

Some people yell at him, "Get a Job!" they say.
Larry doesn't say anything.
He knows it doesn't do any good.
He would rather be invisible than be a target.

Larry knows the best dumpsters in town.
The hard thing is finding a restroom
or a place to take a bath.
Restaurants won't let you use their restrooms
if you are not a customer.
Larry is not a customer he just needs to use the bathroom.
He finds a doorway in an alley.

People don't like for Larry to urinate in their doorway.
The cops will arrest him or beat him up if they see him.
Larry doesn't know how old he is.
Or the last time his home was not a cardboard box.

He still has a small photo of his mother.
At least he thinks it is his mother.
He wants to believe it is her anyway.
He thinks he had a brother once.

His shoes were falling apart.
The soles were coming loose.
He found some duct tape
and taped them back on.
Duct tape is good stuff.

I went by to see Larry the other day.
Larry wasn't home.
His cat was gone too.
I looked around for anything that was worth keeping.
I don't think Larry's coming home no more.

© May 16, 2012 Philip G. DeLoach

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