Moving, Shifting

Central Queensland Herald, Thursday 24 February 1938.
Moving, shifting, like a vagrant that has been my life to date,
Packing duds that are unwilling, even they this shifting hate ;
Leaving friends, who, though they bore me, most (to me) are quite sincere,
Here I am still shifting, moving, going ( . . . . . !) nowhere, leaving here.

Some of us are chronic hoboes, though by taxi, trains, and boat,
Drifting down life's easy laneways, doing nothing much of note ;
Owning nothing worth removing, but the togs in which we stand,
Shirking effort unspectac'lar, plain sustained, routine, and planned.

Moving in, somewhere, unwelcomed, lumping rags, not missed if lost,
Voluble with travellers' mildew—aimless small talk, lightly tossed ;
Shifting, moving, travelling, leaving, practicing the handshake deft,
Seeking friends in towns returned to, quite surprised when they have left !

Up and down a state's old railways, pleased the noise drowns vain regrets,
Floating in and out life's dead ends, like small fish enmeshed in nets,
Drifting, derelict, and helpless in a social ocean wide,
Half submerged in human traffic, that's how hoboes live, and hide.
Moving, shifting, going, coming—vagrants have to come and go,
Irresponsible, unstable, home down in life's undertow ;
Rich in easy, scrappy patter, poor as Jesus Christ was poor,
Leaving life's great problems pending, keeping them untouched, obscure.



The author Louis Arthur Sigsworth, also writes as L. A. S.; Lou and Proletarian
He was born: 3 Aug 1880 Kensington, Victoria and Died: 31 Oct 1943 Rockhampton, Queensland.

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