Home Sweet Homelessness

by Jacob Folger

April 2016


Home sweet Homelessness
Not warm to my heart
No familiar smells nor voices
No toasty hearth
No frosty windows 
To look out
But out in the chill 
I try not to look in.
For the pain, for the pain in my heart.

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Questions For You and Me

By Jacob Folger

Christmas Eve, 2011


Stuffed and overflowing stockings hanging by the fireside

Pretty plastic candlelights glowing in the night

Sticky candy canes hanging from pine tree boughs

This all presents questions, I will in this poem pose.


When a little kid with Christmas time coming round

The joyful music, it seemed was the only sound

But really, I wonder now what it all means to me

Is it all about that perfectly shaped and lighted Christmas tree?


Little, sweet baby Jesus sleeping in some straw

It seems to me that someone might notice a little flaw

What is the difference between that dirty man without a home

And the King of Kings that almost all of us must have known?


And tell me what was that message that He gave to you and me

Before His life was ended on that old and lonely tree?

Was it all about just taking care of little, selfish me?

Or is there more here, more for all of us to see?


I asked a lot of questions in this poem this Christmas Eve

I guess this time of year, the cold, and the suffering that I see

Fills my head and heart with old and sad memories

I am hoping that maybe from it all we will not always flee.


Little, sweet baby Jesus sleeping in some straw

It seems to me that someone might notice a little flaw

What is the difference between that dirty man without a home

And the King of Kings that almost all of us must have known?

The Homeless Stretch

By Jacob Folger


Stretch the chicken, it might keep

Stretch the peanut butter two bites more

Stretch the cool aid for one more drink

Frugal only is the way I think


Stretch the towel one clean corner still

Stretch the soap, there is just me

Stretch my clothing for one more wear

Thank God there is no one near


Stretch my smile for there still is hope

Stretch my good mood for another day

Stretch my prayers I can do one more

Hoping God wont close more doors


Stretch the blanket over my head

Stretch the warmth through til dawn

Stretch my sleep til morning comes

And then stretch the warmth of the sun.




Light Once There

By Jacob Folger


Deepening shadows mark my bed

The time of day is a familiar one

But still I feel the fear

Light once there to me has gone


The cold grips and holds me tight

But no warm relief is near

I tighten my blanket for more heat

Light once there to me has gone


Long forgotten are my prayers

Before I close my eyes

The blanket now my safety net

Light once there to me has gone


So Cold and then forgotten

My higher power once so near

I reach to pull him to me once again

Light once there to me was never gone.



A Shiver Is All

By Jacob Folger


Summer drops off to Autumn

Leaves change and blow free

Days darken early

A shiver is all


A clear cold night

Wind whistling through trees

Frost keeping me up

A shiver is all


A cold dank stairwell

One blanket not two

No pillow for my head

A shiver is all


A sweet Christmas home

Cozy and warm

Comfort completely

But for me, a shiver is all

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Concrete Pillow

By Jacob Folger

December 22, 2011


It is hard, cold and unforgiving

All morning, day and night

Many think I chose this life for me

They say it’s not their fight.


Sometimes the hunger really sucks

But I do have my pride

I wont beg, so if I must

In the garbage I will dive.


My one pair of stockings

are so filthy and so stiff

I try to wash them in the public fountain

Since I wont likely get new ones as a gift.


I while away the hours

I just try to get through each day

I wish there was a job for me

To earn some honest pay.


I watch the traffic going by

Busy people to and fro

It is though I am not even here

No one will say hello.


It is now time to lay down to sleep

I pray the Lord, my soul will keep

And whether or not I die before I wake

All homelessness in this world, please erradicate.

Blank Cardboard Sign

By Jacob Folger

February 10, 2016


Sitting on a park bench

People passing by

I try to speak

But my words just stay inside

I know I need a sign.


One cold can of chicken noodle soup left

To my dog and me

I look hard down the cold sidewalk

Trying hard to muster up a plea


With an almost dried up pen

And cardboard sliced off a box

I cannot seem to write at all

Jesus? What now?

Panhandling is just not for me




Helping Hands

By Jacob Folger - December 25, 2011 


The night time is coming to a close

I have awakened now

But I’m not ready to get out of bed

I can hardly feel my toes. 


This is pretty much a common place

Among the friends I know

It’s okay, I will work it out

Cause I got to take a leak right now. 


So I am up and moving around

Tidying up my things

Put that there, stuff this here

the trash in the trash can sling. 


My friend the business lady

Will be coming soon

With coffee and perhaps some food

Best of all, conversation too. 


I thank my Higher Power

For the good people in this land

There is some hope for folks like me

Thanks for the helping hand.

Although I Wish...

By Jacob Folger

December 20, 2011


All I got is this bag

Tattered and so frayed

One pair of socks to call my own

No place for my head to lay.


Beg for money to buy my food

No fork or knife, man this is crude

I wish I knew what I could do

I should slam a six of booze.


People passing in fine business suits

As if I am not here

“I am a man!” I want to shout

This life is hard to bare.


There is no job to be had

So I sit and hope for better things

I organize my tattered bag 

Whatever it takes to not feel sad.


The sun is setting it is night

My fight has just begun

I pray I won’t freeze before it’s through

Although I wish my life was done.

Feel our lives as Homeless People for a moment. Taste it through our lips. Know it through our touch. Experience it through our words.


Poetry


Written by Formerly Homeless Person, Jacob Folger

Please use with permission only: Contact

This Homeless Way

 By Jake Folger - December 23, 2011


It has been years and years and years since I left that awful life

The freezing cold, the sweaty hot, being lost in time

The isolation, the loneliness, am I not even of this earth?

Will my life ever have meaning? What will it ever be worth?


I had not bathed myself in so many, many months

My clothing was so filthy, man I surely must have stunk

Everything I owned in the world was within my very reach

This life I had not chosen had completely taken over me.


Terrible fears plagued me, would I lose my little spot? 

No one must know I’m living here, absolutely not

I had to hide my life from the world, of which I was not a part

This whole life I was living was hurting me a lot.


It took so many years before I landed on my feet

Still could I walk among the world? Was I really free?

Yes, I guess I have a home I can almost call my own

But even though, it is all still, so very bitter sweet.


So now I do have a home but there is little change in me

I still have the homeless habits, that homeless mentality

I think I will, in some way, always feel I’m still on the street

Do other former homeless people feel the same as me?


So if you know me now, if you see the same clothing day to day

For some reason It is difficult to even want to bathe

And I worry about tomorrow, If I still will have a home

Please know I am trying, it is hard to change this homeless way.