The Poetry of
Jack Scott


A penny, sir,
please give a cent
or more if you can spare it,
for I am but a beggar
and am not long for here.
I knew too much
to make a living out of life,
so here I am.
I’ll linger long as kindness lasts..
It’s cold enough to freeze, you know.
My feet are wet,
my belt is out of notches;
there’s hunger and there’s thirst.
You need not know
which craving you’ll support.

Thank you, sir.
You have not tithed, we know,
but this will buy a drink
to numb the night and blanket me
with dreamlessness
and soften me with sleep
so I may confront tomorrow.

14 ®Copyright 1957 Jack Scott. All rights reserved.