The Hungry Mouse

The image shows a tiny mouse sitting in a wicker basket. There are a couple of grocery lists and some dry pantry items in the background.

In the world of plenty
a few crumbs falling
from the rich man’s table
is enough to sustain
a little hungry mouse.

Few crumbs fall
in the hidden world of shanty towns,
and now-idle factories;
gold mines and coal mines,
and drought-stricken farms.

You bemoan the closure of
your favourite restaurant
the theatres and the bars;
all the absent opportunities
for late night fun.

While the poor child huddles hungry
in his weeping mother’s lap,
you watch Netflix munching popcorn;
playing pointless games
on your fancy flashy phone.


Written in response to SadjeWhat Do You See #39 photo prompt.
Image credit: S Hermann and F Richter on Pixabay

Juxtaposition

Juxtaposition

Luxury cars displayed, glass-encased,

a stone’s throw from where

people make their homes

under flyovers.

 

Leafy suburbs, all high walls and gated communities,

where the fat pony’s stable

is a step up

from the best built shack.

 

Assuage your guilt by paying someone

to mow your lawn

or clean your house

for a cut above the minimum wage.

 

Turn your head away, un-see them all;

the beggar by the robot,

the thin woman with the baby on her back

picking through the trash.

 

Don’t look back

Don’t glance over your shoulder.

It’s all still there.

 

High up, in your shiny city apartment

overlooking the city-bright lights

you forget the people

shivering on the street.

 


South Africa is the most unequal country in the world and reading this post from Sadje last week impelled me to write this. 

Note: ‘robot’ is what we call a traffic light here.