William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Homelessness’

Writing About Cherry Blossoms

Yesterday morning we drove past the cherry trees in the park across from the state capitol. Given the chilly weather lately — there was even some snow on the ground in the hilly areas around town — it will be many days yet before they are at the peak of their bloom. I was out this morning at the first hint of light, walking in an icy wind. I thought […]

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Trade Policy

The symbol strikes me every time I see him — the homeless man with his hand out, under the light at the corner of Commercial and Division. December 22, 2019   Trade Policy If I have something you need and more of it than I can use; and if you have something I need and more of it than you can use; then let us simply give the excess to […]

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Image and Line

Canvas 595 — December 4, 2015

The autumn that began so early and that was so promising in terms of rain, has given way to a stagnant winter, even before winter has quite arrived. This morning, every molecule of vehicle exhaust hangs low in the street, held in place by fog. Wood smoke is a relief tantamount to fresh air. Inside, at least, one is able to mask the pollution with the scent of simple home […]

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Scars

High water has driven the homeless from their encampment on the west side of the river. In that place alone, they number in the hundreds. They turn up everywhere — downtown, in parks, under bridges, in the public library, in the hospital half-starved and with nasty infections. Moss grows on asphalt. Daffodils make way for tulips. How high is high moral ground? What is it like to live there? No […]

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Disaster

During my San Joaquin Valley childhood, there were still a few boxcars used as homes, tucked away in odd corners on useless bits of land. Nestled in mounds of chickweed, with old blown tires and chickens in the yard, they seemed like seeds scattered by a giant’s hand, or fruit fallen from a tree in a homegrown fairy tale. Life inside could not have been comfortable, too cold in winter, […]

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