“The Street Urchin” by Antonio Mancini


As a boy, he never knew the meaning of a roof,
Living among the stars, and gutter walls,
Climbing trees and mountain peaks,
Just to survive as days went passing by.

This little boy, knew no other life,
Than the life on the lonely streets,
Where insults were given more generously than food,
And best friends were these means of stealth.

Feeling the emptiness of hunger and cold,
As he slept on the hard sidewalks,
Yet still he dreamed of doing great deeds,
For what are dreams but the voices of our heart?

So this little boy, who never drowned in tears,
Threw away from himself the basest of his fears,
And took it upon himself to be a great man,
Yet told himself to never forget his humble roots.

It was a challenging road, he chose to take,
Trying to learn without being taught,
Sometimes finding he must choose between two wrongs,
The obstacles blocking the road were endless.

His eyes shone brightly as he studied on the streets,
His thirst for knowledge burning brightly,
Days passed by, days which turned into years,
And he grew to be a made man, off the streets.

No more sleeping on the sidewalks under the rain,
Nor doing petty tasks to make a penny for grain,
Yet as he walked down the roads of his childhood,
He remembered the feeling of poverty.

And when bright eyes peeked through the shadows,
Helpless, cold, and hungry,
The now turned man passed on the gift of knowledge,
As the greatest gift one can give to the helpless.


When one sets their mind to achieve something,
When one decides that they must learn,
What are obstacles but petty nuisances,
To be forgotten, once overcome.


13 thoughts on “Obstacles”

  1. Liked the sprawling sort of encumbrance that cloaks the poem in the semi-darkness of early evening. I liked the lines

    “When one decides that they must learn,
    What are obstacles but petty nuisances,”

    because so much of life is spent figuring out the differences between obstacles and petty nuisances. Very cool take on getting what you want and wanting what you get. Great read.


  2. dear deadpoet,

    this poem moved me to tears. i love the lessons of life through a streetchild who persevered against all odds to learn how to alleviate his condition. this serves as an inspiration for the many who are clinging to the last thread of hope. what an excellent poem!

    thank you for sharing your gift and the beauty of your heart.

  3. What a poem! You said a marvelous story in a poem.

    I too agree wisdom is the best thing we can share amongst ourselves. Wise people are the happiest people in earth.

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