Rooming House Blues

I sit here at my TV lost in this little dirty underground welfare room

I turn away as a pizza commercail comes on

Get up like off of fly paper from my garbage bin La Z -Boy

I look into the rooms’ full size frigde

Discovering only sad lonely 3 day old Kraft Dinner

Stail brown bread and penut butter

Just a skid-row survival kit

I head out into Januarys dark rains for the meal line at U.G.M

Just another organization that sells their religion for a free meal

I stand there in hunger and maddness

With a piece of cardboard for an umbrella

Feel like a refugee in my own country

I take a seat beside a native dude

That’s only in his 30’s put looks 50

Smells like and open bottle of Listerine

My next seat is beside this little old man

Curled up on his chair like it could be a bed

Smelling of urine

He shiver’s the cold streets off of his ragged dirty skinny body

Looking around with wide lost saucer eyes

As if bombs are going off near us

I stand up agance the back wall

Wishing I had a blindfold on and that last cigarette

We’er pack in there like hungry cattle

On the way to Vonnegut’s slaughterhouse

The old dull brown sad ottatorem

Smells like moldy dirty laundry

As us cattle have to sit in anxious hunger now

and listen to an amateur Jesus freak for 30 minutes

before we sit down to a 3 minut meal

He’s a well-to-do doctor

and for show-and-tell he brings his picturesque son on stage

Like he just won the lottery and leaves exit stage left

The doctor starts his long old deep welled story

Like his soul was for rent

Always mixed in with it

” If you don’t accapt Jesus Christ you’re going to Hell ” Kind of shit

His suit and hair cut is worth more then what I make

At the $8 hour slave labor pool in six months

Getting to the bottem end of his deep welled story

He tells us that the other day he had to let this women know

That her husband of 37 years was dieing

With arms wide open

Like he’s on top of a mountain

He tells us that the women and husband are Buddhists

Giving us a picture in words

Of him watching this women now praying

Beside her dieing husband

and he shaking his head thinking to himself

That thay are both going to Hell now

Because they don’t beleave in Jesus fuckin’ christ

I would have got sick rate there

But I didn’t have anything in my stomach

I should have brought ear plugs

and that Bukowski novel I was reading

Notes of a dirty old man

From just another dirty old man.


Copyright © 2011 by Henry Doyle

Published in the MEGAPHONE,  Issue 50/April 2, 2010  Vancouver’s Street Paper.

Also The 24 hour news paper. May 26/10


  1. Keep writing Henry – your poems do belong in a book.
    Really great writing – thanks for sharing it.

  2. Really well organized professional blog and of course a great story.

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