The Drifter and the Bag Lady

The Drifter and the Bag Lady

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Photograph was taken by me from the Promenade at Sidmouth, South Devon, UK, in 2009

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As the world passes by 
Hell bent on perdition, 
I set out to fulfil 
My future, my mission. 

With more hope than food, 
Dragging debt, fear and guilt,
I packed up my bags.
My resolve will not wilt. 

I’m off to explore.  
The world at my feet; 
Hope riding high, 
No thought of defeat. 

Though rough it will be,
I can face it with vigour;  
With belief and good health – 
A resolute figure, 

*  *  *


My 2001 Pencil and Wash drawing of a Homeless lady outside the Marienwerdersche Church in Berlin in the 1930s – from ‘The German Century’ by Michael Sturmer.

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Depressed and defeated,
My world’s at an end.
Its simpler to die
Than life’s troubles to mend.

I sit here alone, 
My future in tatters. 
No one will help.
To them no one else matters. 

Men’s struggle for power
Has brought me to this. 
Their pride and their greed,
That’s what’s amiss. 

The end will come quickly. 
My future is bleak.
No reason to hope. 
It’s the fate of the weak. 

      *  *  *


My Pen and Wash drawing of London Embankment in the Late 19th Century

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So who is there listening – 
Deciding their fate? 
What will govern his hope?  
Who will her woes abate?

They both deserve better,
A chance to win through.
But the prospects for either 
Are certainly few.

Has the world lost its Eden? 
Has Gehenna won through? 
Has Heaven receded? 
No chance to renew? 

And who is to blame? 
Who’s fault is it then?
 . . . History will speak, 
And Fate will say when. 

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My own pen and wash version of Philip de Loutherbourg’s 1801 oil painting, ‘Coalbrookdale At Night’. The picture has come to symbolise the birth of the Industrial Revolution in England.  It is also often seen as the personification of the GATES TO HELL. 





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