Sunday Poem

It Denotes

If you walk by
And find me,
Lying on my side, curled
Like a comma
On a street corner
With no blanket
To cover myself
I am not in a coma
It denotes . . .
Stop briefly
And ponder over these times.

If you find me
Lying on my side
Legs stretched and straight
Head and shoulders
Bent forward, towards my loins
Like a question mark
It denotes . . .
Provide explanations . . .
Why certain people
Happen to sleep
On street pavements.

If you find me
Lying on my back
My whole body stretched
At a horizontal attention
like an exclamation mark
It denotes . . .
I am in shock
Do not bother
I will recover.

And when you find me coiled
My head between my legs
Round like a full stop
It denotes . . .
Stop and render first aid
Subject freezing.

by Julius Chingono

publisher: First published on PIW
in a special Zimbabwean edition,
10th June 2008, 2008