Archive for the ‘displacement’ Category

Eviction Ville

October 7, 2017

Eviction Ville

The threat—the threat is always there. No matter what I did or how I do it, it rises up like a deadly snake. I cannot stay in this or that place—I cannot stay there, wherever there is, for long. It is only for a short while, for a few weeks, a few months if I’m lucky. I have to go—it is ordered, it is forced upon me. I don’t want to but I have to. There isn’t any other way. There is only Eviction Ville.

 

 

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Nasty Neighbor

October 5, 2017

Nasty

There was a knock on the door, a heavy knock. The woman opened the door. She saw a bleached blonde standing before her. Oh, yes, the neighbor from the second floor, she thought. The blonde’s face was angry; her wrinkles were prominent. Do you know that your cat meows during the night? Is he feral? Feral? Of course, he isn’t feral. He’s a stray I am fostering. You’re not fostering him. He hasn’t even seen a vet. Yes, he has seen a vet, the woman behind the door said. Then why is he meowing. That’s what cats do. You bitch! I am going to call the ASPCA. I’m going to have you kicked out. Don’t call the ASPCA. On second thought call them. I’m helping the cat. The woman on the inside of the door shrugged her shoulders. Enough! I am tired of these people. If it’s not one, it’s another. Unsafe—now I feel more unsafe about housing than ever. It’s like I can never be home. I can never have my little sure thing space somewhere, anywhere.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Go

September 30, 2017

You go. You come. You fight. You argue and I don’t know why. You say you care. You say you don’t want to be emotionally close. Only the people you lost mean anything to you. Those people are gone but you don’t care. You love them. I don’t fit in anywhere. I care but you pull away. Will this be it, the end for what I feel? My heart hurts; it truly misses you. It is baffled and confused. Is caring for you a crime according to you?

The Empty Cup

September 27, 2017

The Empty Cup

She put the plastic cup next to her on the sidewalk. It was a busy time of the afternoon. People of all ages walked by—kids with their parents, tourists with cameras hanging from their necks, well-dressed women wearing high end jewelry, good-looking men carrying briefcases. Not a cent, not one penny. What am I doing here? Why am I here? I don’t want to. I want to be someplace where doing this won’t be necessary.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our Spot

September 27, 2017

Our Spot

Get out! This is our spot! It’s not yours, it belongs to us. We were here before you. One of the 2 men shouted at the man sitting cross legged on the sidewalk in front of the pharmacy. They wore shabby T-shirts and trousers on the dirty side. The man looked at them. You don’t own the sidewalk; nobody does. I am here for a few days, a few days only; then I am gone. It’ll be all yours. He took out a small pencil from his pocket. If you don’t leave, I’ll call the police, the woman next to the man said. She took out her cell phone and started to dial 911. The older of the 2 men made a gesture of disbelief and called someone with his phone. He said he has been here but I never saw him before. As soon as the 2 men left, the woman shook her head. What a horrible world this is! For a spot, a lousy spot, you could get hurt. That’s how it is, the man replied.

 

Beggar on the Street

September 20, 2017

Beggar on the Street

You-it was you. You were the one who cheated me out of the money. It wasn’t much, just a few dollars, but it was my money. I earned it. It was me who helped you with the clear plastic bags full of empty cans and bottles. It was me who was there when you recycled them at the Duane Reade pharmacy in midtown. You think you were so cool and smart; you cheated a woman out of what was rightfully hers. It’s dog eat dog mentality as far as you are concerned. You think I’m weak. It is not so. People like you make me sad. I feel sorry for you.

 

 

Disbelief

September 17, 2017

Disbelief

Someone’s bag brushed hard against her leg but she didn’t say anything. She was getting off at the next stop and there was no point. For once, there was enough room on the subway seats; the younger woman sitting next to her didn’t think so because when her own and much smaller bag touched her by accident, she cursed. You bitch! The first woman stared at her. No, I am not a bitch. The man on one of the seats laughed. Others in the subway car looked, said nothing. The woman who had verbally abused her went on and on. You skinny; you’ve always been skinny. You look like my sister. The first woman remembered an incident on the subway where someone had hit a 70 year old woman over a seat. I can’t be your sister, she answered. I am not like you, nowhere near like you. The younger woman said she loved her anyway because she believed in Jesus. I don’t and can’t believe in Jesus if there are people like you in this world. Please go see a psychiatrist tomorrow. The subway seemed to take forever to get to her stop. Sometimes crossing the Manhattan Bridge from Canal Street to Dekalb Avenue took over 7 or 8 minutes. She sighed with relief when the train stopped. I hope this doesn’t happen again but next time I’m calling 911.

 

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Another

September 7, 2017

Here it is. Another just like you wanted. I bought you another. I shouldn’t have but I couldn’t help it. You seemed to need it so much, so very much. I wanted to help, but maybe I helped in the wrong way. You can’t do without it. It’s the addiction. You go off it, but then you go back again. It is your poison; but to you the addiction is as important as chocolate ice cream is to a kid on a sultry summer day.

Wreck

September 3, 2017

Give me. Just stop asking questions. Just give me. I need the money. I have to have the money. What I need is nickels and dimes compared to what I used to have, but you have to understand: I am desperate. I act desperate. I feel desperate. It’s either the money or I don’t know what. It could be a lot worse. Things will not improve easily, I can tell you that right now. The out I was expecting isn’t coming. I don’t know if it will ever come. I am not hoping for it a anytime soon.

The Emergency

August 5, 2017

The Emergency

The siren made a loud noise through the city streets. The siren yelled hard; it was almost midnight and somebody inside the ambulance was very sick. A paramedic with a computer on his lap took down all of the man’s information. He asked questions; the woman holding on to the patient’s stretcher helped with the answers. He cannot wait any longer, she told the paramedic. Just look at the way his face is. I had to call 911 and ask help for him. I had to. It was a short trip to the hospital. The ambulance stopped by the emergency dept. After the patient was wheeled in, there were more questions. When these were answered, the woman stayed with her head resting by her friend’s feet all night. In the morning, the man is discharged. She goes with him.