For Fernando

Fire burning inside me
Sadness turns to happy

Two arms holding mine
Discord now is rhyme

Rainbow spreading above
As loneliness becomes love


The Better Beggar

Homeless person begging
For a buck on bended knee
Advertisers pandering
For bigger bucks from me

Which is worse
In my mind?
Or are they of
The same kind?

One asks for pity
But puts up barely a fuss
The other tries it all
To win my lasting trust

One forces weathered hand
Toward avoiding face
The other crams it down my throat
To make sure I get a taste

Beggars beg to pass the time
Floundering at rock bottom
In society’s eyes they amount
To nothing more than rotten

Begging businesses hide behind
The mask of free enterprise
And disguise their begging pleas
In hyperbole and lies
Vagrants are rounded up
And shoved into a corner
Corporate America targets
And demonizes the former

In places I can easily avoid
Beggars hang out…here and there
Not so the other beggars
For they are everywhere

Billboards, TV, radio and Web
At the movie theatre and video store
Hell, they even got stinkin’ ads
Right on the supermarket floor!

I’m Steve Wynn
And this is my new hotel
Coke is it, just do it
It’s better at the Bell

Plop plop fizz fizz
The proud, the few
I’m Tom Bodell
And we’ll leave the light on for you  

Seventy zillion served
The ultimate driving machine
Viagra’s gonna help you
Get it on with Mr. Clean

Can you hear me now? Good.
Chicken of the sea
The king of…ahhh, crap!
Give it a rest, please

I could go on forever
With slogans in my head
Now that Madison Avenue
Has replaced life with ads instead

But ‘brother can you spare a dime’
From vagabond or bum
Is a tagline of another sort
One actually heard quite seldom

It bothers me hardly at all
Pervades my life far less
Of both the beggars I’m crystal clear
Which one of them is best

The homeless man can have his place
In this lucky life I lead
But take away the di-ad-rhea
And restore the balance I need

Yeah, give me homeless, give me stench
Leave me penniless and alone
Just take away the corporate filth
Trashing every American home

I dream of a day to come
When millionaire moguls across the land
House the homeless, feed the hungry
And put a dime in that weathered hand

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