Poverty Zero? Zero Poverty?!

9 04 2010

A pauper’s tale

Poverty is still poverty

In the midst of prayers
In the chill of a mosque
A boy in Baju Melayu
Asks for a dollar from me
“I’m quite thirsty, uncle,
I need to buy a drink”
Lucky for him that day
I happen to have $2
Out of my pants pocket
I hand to him a dollar

Outside the Masjid
I shake a firm grip
Of a 50-something
He’s been jobless
For years on end
He wipes his dear
Old blue Nissan 120Y
From raindrops to dry
I wish I could give him
Ten dollars for his fuel
God willing, next time

I stop by in town next
Into an Indian eatery
Wanna sip cuppa tea
One able-bodied guy
Pitifully came up to me
“You got a dollar for me?”
I let him have only money
I wanna pay for tea-pully

I drive by my Kampung
Walking along the street
A stroke-victim villager
Passes by me limpingly
I search for loose coins
This young man’s lucky
God spares him cent-60

Poverty zero or zero poverty?





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