Thunder rolls on the pavement

where hurrying feet pass by

unmindful of the cardboard hut

where some children lie.

They thought they’re quite lucky

for that roof over their heads

sheltering them from the world

as they curl on their newspaper beds.

In that little corner

excited  voices rise

while they tell their stories

of alms received and pockets sliced.

A tinkle of a coin

betrays a merry game

to quell the loud thunder

that has nothing to do with rain.

The rumbling in their bodies

keep the rhythm of their  day.

Is hunger such a friend

that it won’t go away?

When all’s been done

and still they fail

that bag of rugby* gives solace

with deep breaths, ‘peace’ they inhale.


*a chemical adhesive that is/was popular in the Philippines and has the effect of hallucinatory drugs.

This post  was written in response to the challenge posed by

Trifecta: Week Twenty-five

to write a response in 33-333 words to the word “THUNDER” which for this exercise means a noun =  3: bang, rumble <the thunder of big guns>

Thank you for reading and for your comments.  For great responses, head over to the Trifecta page and enjoy the posts.

Best regards,




  1. What a heart-breakingly poignant poem this is! Great use of the prompt as a rumbling noise for streetchildren, whether it’s from hunger or just noise that passes time. So sad for the truths this beholds.

    • Thanks Sandra. I was only thinking of ‘hunger’ – true, thunder could be all the other noises around them or worries of their young lives.

  2. Your poem was so nicely written. I am always impressed by someone who can do this. The rumbles in the children’s’ tummies breaks my heart.

    • Thank you for dropping by and the comment, Barbara. Theirs is a painful life, one can almost excuse the unpleasant things they do because of their situation.

  3. This is powerful stuff. You put it into great perspective, and used thunder perfectly, twice! I heard about the chemical; I think there is something like that in South America as well, where they inhale rubber cement.

    • Thank you for dropping by and the nice words, Braintomahawk. They are much appreciated. It is sad that these common industrial chemicals are abused and by children at that.

    • Thank you for visiting and the comment. Yeah, it is hard to think of a child being hungry, but there are many hungry children. How terrible a situation it is.

  4. Beautiful poem. Every word had such significance and meaning. I don’t always feel that way when taking in poetry. Absolutely lovely, even if the subject matter was not.

  5. Thank you for the explanation of the bag of rugby. I got the sense that it was a drug, but not what solace it gave. I think that’s the saddest thing. Not only are they starving. Their money doesn’t go for food.

  6. Thanks for linking up to Trifecta this week. What a heartbreaking response to the prompt. It reminded me of the glue-sniffing children on the streets of Kenya–hallucinating to forget that they’re starving. Excellent job with the prompt. Hope to see you back again soon.

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