Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2010

The Street Tramp

by Alister Gray

After 20 hours of boozing and hitting the bottle,
he stands outside preaching as if Aristotle.
I wonder how long it’s been since he last washed,
he probably can’t remember he’s consistently sloshed.
With his green parker jacket…well actually more brown.
He has a face of dark leather, wearing a constant frown.
He stands there alone clutching his can of super ale,
God only knows how he’s not landed in jail.
As drunk as he gets, he never is rude,
he whispers and groans about no money for food.
I really do feel lots of pity and shame,
I wonder if he’s feeling exactly the same?
Where does he sleep? How cold must it be?
I thank my lucky stars it’s not happening to me.
I wonder how old he is and why he’s like this,
when was he last sober and not out on the piss?
And yet every morning he’s there on the bench,
Sporting some brand new beer stains and that horrible stench.
He awakes to the sun from his makeshift camp,
this is the life of the Archway Street Tramp.

Added: 13.04.2010

Judges' comments on this poem


Really like this poem except for the constriction of the rhymes.


Enjoyed the poem, has real feeling and I enjoy rhymes.