Saturday, December 17, 2005


This woman can be found in Piccadilly.
Huddled on the pavement
Perilously close
To the tramping feet of passers-by,
She clutches her son to her.
A ragged cup is waved listlessly.
Her eyes are downcast.
She neither talks to
Nor accosts those who stride past.
Her cup becomes no heavier.
The sleeping child, hardly visible
Beneath a blanket seems less beggar's prop
Than tired mite. Is this woman,
headscarfed and olive-skinned,
A genuine "gypsy"? .
Does she need to have the message
that begging is unacceptable
"brought home" to her?

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