Oh my, it’s cold today … wind whips the last of the crinkly leaves from shrubs and trees to the ground, that just a few mornings ago had a confectioners sugar-like sprinkling of snow upon it. It is gone now, but the cold and the possibility of more snow is very much the subject of conversation today, along with the political implications of President Obama’s compromise with the Republicans.
I am reminded of a character by the name of Crazy Sally, who showed up on my computer screen a number of years ago as I began to write a poem about December and the holiday hoopla that happens at this time of year. What I got was the following poem:
Wind hurls snow between the stars Shadows bulge with rats
Crazy Sally sleeps on a grate Covered with cardboard torn Coat with yellow stains Her last meal behind the deli Pockets spilling over like horns of plenty
She snores through carols Sung by a choir of angels By morning her pocket emptied
The State of Virginia is threatening to close 2 of its mental institutions. We’ve been here before … with both the economy and the release of patients from hundreds of mental hospitals that were closed in the past because of lack of funds. An institution of this sort may not be the greatest place to live, but those who are unable to care of themselves, never mind find a job, are at least sheltered and fed there. Already, there are many more men, women and children living in their cars or on the streets who have never been in a mental hospital because they have lost their jobs and their homes. Many more will follow including those who cannot mentally cope, unless our economy turns around.
Please join me this holiday season giving to the bell-ringer on the corner, a shelter in your area and/or your local food bank. I believe it really is up to each one of us to help our neighbors especially if they are homeless.
P.S. There are more Crazy Sally poems and I’ll be sharing them as I go along!