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The Blog Bog

The Mag Rack


It is against the law
to beg in the subway.
Help create order.
Don't give money to lawbreakers.

I heard these lines the other day
while riding the downtown no. 6 train.
They reminded me
of an announcement
I used to hear
some twenty years ago
during the Koch era.

The point then
was about the same,
that homeless people should go away
and leave decent middle-class people alone
to read their newspapers
and contemplate
the course of history
while the stock market
along with the polar icecaps.

After Koch
there was Dinkins
then there was Giuliani
and now there's Bloomberg.
Mayors come and go
but some things don't change.

Homeless people
are here to stay,
so you'd better get used to them.

Their stories aren't bad
as theater,
if you think about them
as tragedy.

                           George Snedeker


Dave has been living in the streets
for five years.
He begs every day
to get money for a bite to eat.

He has a crutch that he uses
just like in The Three Penny Opera
that he's never heard of.
They didn't assign Brecht
in Dave's high school.

The other day
on the F train,
Dave was telling the story of his accident
and how he just got out of the emergency room
of Beth Israel Hospital ,
when a blind man offered to give Dave
a dollar.

Dave said,
"No man, that's ok!"
and quickly made his way out the door
and back into the next subway car,
as the train moved on.

                           George Snedeker

I Like It

He claimed to be
a Vietnam vet.
He was raving.

I thought that the cop
who patrols this area
of Penn Station
would tell him
he'd have to leave.

I've seen him hanging out here
talking loudly,
but not
out of control.

He walked
up to me
and said
loud and clear,
"How long have you
had that beard?"

I told him,
"About forty years."

He smiled and said,
"It's cool!
I like it"
                           George Snedeker