The guilt of giving- Laban Erapu

The guilt of giving

You’ve seen the heap of rags

That pollutes the air-conditioned

City centre,

That louse that creeps about

In the clean core of sophistication;

You’ve seen him waylay his betters

And make them start-

Especially when they have no change.


You recall the day you came upon him

And were startled by his silent presence

Intruding into your preoccupation:

You hurled a coin

Which missed the mark

And rolled into the gutter

Where he groped for it

With a chilling grotesque gratitude

That followed you down the street.

You dived into the nearest shop

To escape the stare

Of the scandalized crowd

That found you guilty

Of recalling attention

To the impenetrable presence

They had learnt not to see.

Laban Erapu


2 thoughts on “The guilt of giving- Laban Erapu

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