“Chocolate Ice”

“Chocolate Ice”–that’s what people used to call my dear friend Terrence back in high school, because he was so crazy about ice skating. In recent years, he’d watch people skating around the wintertime rink at Pershing Square in downtown LA and feel nostalgic about those days. “I was like some homeless dude with a shopping […]

Walter’s beautiful journey

My dear friend Walter had the biggest smile when he showed me the keys. He couldn’t wait to give me a tour of his new place. A year ago he was enthusiastically showing me an alleyway where he slept. But now he had housing. Actual housing. This was after 15 long years living on the […]

“What makes you happy?”

I ran into Tommy again. He felt ashamed of his smell and appearance. All the more reason for me to sit down next to him. We sat together on the sidewalk shoulder to shoulder leaning up against a wall. I bought him some coffee and a warm meal. “What makes you happy, John?” he asked me. […]

MacGyver of Skid Row

While I was in Skid Row I ran into my friend Terrance. He used to be a successful computer engineer making a six figure salary. When his wife left him for another man he went into deep depression which led to drug addiction and then after losing everything he became homeless. He’s been on the […]

He had these sad soulful eyes.

He had these sad soulful eyes. He was sitting on the sidewalk gazing into the distance, but not really looking at anything. Just a blank, empty stare. Robert suffers from bipolar disorder with major depression, and today was a bad day for him. “I will buy you what ever you want to eat” I said […]

“Do you not hate poetry?”

I saw Kenny again. Standing alone among the crowd. It seemed everyone was going one way, and he was standing facing them. He looked more tired and dejected than the last time I saw him. He gently approached people and asked them “Do you not hate poetry?” Some were puzzled by the question, but most […]