VERSE | I AM PARALYSED

LISTEN TO THE POEM BEING READ AT: https://vm.tiktok.com/ZSd8NkqMC/?k=1
I saw a man at a street vendor’s today
He was engaged in the enterprise of buying fruit
His expression was a breath short of displeased
He wanted a bargain; he planned to depart with his loot.
The air conditioned grocery store was his next stop
Where he paid three times as much for some shrivelled carrots.
I watched these transactions in the street and the store
The poor man got swindled; the rich just made more
I watched capitalism play out its gory game
But I just watched, my mouth was scotch-taped.

I saw a runner deliver food today
To someone in a swanky neighbourhood
The man came out, took his food, turned around
The rider waited a while, staying where he stood
But the man had disappeared into the embrace
Of his upmarket condo, his ultra elegant space
Discretionary income was for parties and clothes
Doling out tips was for mass market folks
I watched these Economics of One play out
But I just watched, my hands were bound.

I have seen these and many more
Unbalanced, unequal, sad acts of trade
The shiny big ones always splashed with largesse
The small, modest ones always selfishly made.
The serendipity of kindness and grace
The simplicity of a helping hand
Are like ships that we have lost at sea
Broken pieces now and then washing up on the sand.
I watch these exploits crush and agonise
But I just watch, I am paralysed.

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