Bag Lady

Song lyrics by Charles Gargiulo:


This was originally published by the New Lowell Offering in 1977. 

She drifts from the depots and bus stops
To still the chill in her bones.
She has to keep moving constantly
To hide the fact she’s alone.

When she stops to rest her weary legs
She clutches the bag to her breast.
Within she keeps her husband alive
With the pictures that he left.

And all the children tease the bag lady.
And all the people say, “My she’s crazy.”
Carrying her home in her bag
A home of pictures and rags.

Inside the bag was a change of clothes
And memories of the past.
Some pictures of her husband and son
That have yellowed very fast.

Inside this home was a wardrobe
And a life of total joy.
Where her husband never aged a day
And her son remained a boy.

And all the children tease the bag lady.
And all the people say, “My she’s crazy.”
Carrying her home in her bags.
Her home of pictures and rags.


Charlie Gargiulo is the author of Legends of Little Canada: Aunt Rose, Havey’s Bookland and My Captain Jack to be published next month but now available for pre-order from Loom Press.

2 Responses to Bag Lady

  1. David Daniel says:

    Charlie, congratulations on the launch of LEGENDS OF LITTLE CANADA. I’m reading it now. I came late to the moveable feast that is Lowell (arrived in 1986), but I remember a lot of what you chronicle. I was a big patron of Harvey’s in its swansong days (when I bought almost every paperback original in the John D. Macdonald canon, at ten cents apiece).

  2. Charles Gargiulo says:

    Thank you David. I’m a big fan of your work and hope you enjoy Legends of Little Canada. From the first time I stumbled into Harvey’s little bookstore on Aiken Street in Little Canada as an 11 year old kid ,he was a touchstone and mentoring influence in my life for the next 35 years or so until he couldn’t continue. Over the years he became the same uncle like figure to my late son Charlie Jr. and Harvey will always feel like family to me. Not only was he a “legend of Little Canada, he became a legend of Lowell and book fans far and wide. I hope my memoir does him the justice his kind soul deserves.