… *


Citizen lamb.da. “Citoyen lambda”. Anyone of us.






Just refused food (by default) to someone asking me if I had something to eat. Autumn mood all over the place, it’s getting late and cold, his hands are charcoal black with dirt and he seems uncomfortable. Out of the blue, on the forbidden metro, another-beggar as I try to be on time and to focus on the challenging evening ahead. I said “no” while another part of me slowly remembers that I have biscuits in my bag. He gently turns away, looks at someone else, but doesn’t ask again.

He got off at the next stop, didn’t ask for food to anyone else, leaving me to ponder about how to give the now-inedible-biscuits-for-ME in the bag and to stop being carelessly mean. And so sensitive. How much does it “cost” to ask for help? I know it can be a lot, more than manageable. And to refuse it?

It’s an expensive business in a busy hive.

So little surplus here, in this big labyrinth. All this rushing and painful madness. Becoming someone I don’t want to be. CARE pops up as EXIT. 

Thanking a choosy heart-breaker of a beggar for this reality check.



Brought back to lifetimes ago.



When Auntie Kate told me this story, I was expecting some epic mythological something special effects tale instead.

It took me ages to fully appreciate the sweetness of Mary had a little lamb.

– First words ever recorded by T. Edison (tin foil and phonograph)



Also sung as a nursery rhyme:


Mary had a little lamb,
Little lamb, little lamb,
Mary had a little lamb,
Its fleece was white as snow

Everywhere that Mary went,
Mary went, Mary went,
Everywhere that Mary went
The lamb was sure to go

It followed her to school one day
School one day, school one day
It followed her to school one day
Which was against the rules.

It made the children laugh and play,
Laugh and play, laugh and play,
It made the children laugh and play
To see a lamb at school

And so the teacher turned it out,
Turned it out, turned it out,
And so the teacher turned it out,
But still it lingered near

And waited patiently about,
Patiently about, patiently about,
And waited patiently about
Till Mary did appear

“Why does the lamb love Mary so?”
Love Mary so? Love Mary so?
“Why does the lamb love Mary so?”
The eager children cry

“Why, Mary loves the lamb, you know.”
Loves the lamb, you know, loves the lamb, you know
“Why, Mary loves the lamb, you know.”
The teacher did reply










About a month later, another-beggar jumps on the tram. He’s even dirtier than the day he became Not-another-beggar and made me re-question my not-so-kindness because of his gentleness. A silent and to myself “please, may I have something in my bag”… I have. It’s all the way from a health food paradise, it must be there, somewhere in this messy travel bag. How not to get too embarrassed while Not-another-beggar waits for what I have to give could be another section of earth opening up, swallowing me at last, stories. He gently says that there is no obligation to give and moves on with a smile. The fixed idea of not-to-give-money-to-beggars starts to melt. The bag is searched and searched, I won’t give up. It’s found. The holy of holiest super healthy power bar.

I think I showed to Not-another-beggar the face of a happy child when I gave it to Him, “my” god of beggars, the one who taught me something I’m not capable of expressing with so little words.

To your health, happiness and long life, I’ll add a little note if we ever meet again and try to get you a job (when I get one myself).





* Early October post, happily updated.


Published by chameleoniantimes

Chameleonian Times, works by Helene Vanderhulst

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