Not Just Homeless: A Poem

The poem below was written by a YWCA resident, Lenore Allen. Lenore is very active within the community and the YW, serving on the Resident Council. She wrote the poem as part of the Creative Writing course that has been hosted by Ball State professors for the past several weeks.


Not Just Homeless

By Lenore Allen


Not just homeless, but in between blessings

Though some may look condescending.

What you call manipulation

I call exercising my faith,

Yet only ignorance can stimulate hate.


It reaches beyond age, domestic violence, and gender.

It may just be a result of an evil, hidden agenda.

Doesn’t make sense when you have a degree.

No?! What doesn’t make sense is your judgement

And negativity.


Or the way that you try to affect my self worth,

When God has already determined that before birth.

For I already know who I am.

Even though I may be uneducated, I’m still

Familiar with Uncle Sam.


I’m a mother. I’m a professional.

I’m a blessing that loves unconditional.

I have a swagger. Yes, that is true.

So many gifts and talents,

Maybe even more than you.


Never underestimate the value of someone,

Or the very person you may look down-upon.

They may open your eyes to understand

That there are too many differences in the

Complexities of man.


So while you categorize me and try to put

Me in a box,

I’ve already destroyed the keys and the locks.


I’m not too old

Or too ugly or too fat.

And though I live in a shelter

I still don’t live in lack.


I have a voice that will be heard,

Even if you think it’s absurd.

For its only when we hear the voice of change

That the previous barriers and stereotypes

Will no longer remain.


Until I am homeless no more

And I continue to walk through all the open doors.

After my testimony and through all of my tests,

Continuing to encourage others and to

Abundantly bless.


Hopefully we can end this cycle of abuse,

A world of ignorance and people obtuse.

Creating a world where character counts,

Building contributing citizens, priceless, beyond

Numerical amount.