Cleaning House

Posted on October 15, 2008 by Sara Hickman. | Comments Off on Cleaning House

Sticky lemonade under foot. Gotta mop this floor!
Making breakfast of bagels and cereal and cold,
sweet
orange juice…
making sure there is a napkin
in each lunch box,
next to the graham crackers and applesauce,
nestling up to each
other by the
sandwich,
by the
spoon.

Someone out there on the streets of Austin
Is looking down at their feet.
They are shuffling in circles
no where to go,
really…
Just waking up to their day
And walking in the woods.
Walking towards the brink of
CONSTANTLY
trying to understand
HOW
They ended up
HERE
here….
In Poverty
With a capital “P”.
They have left their
apartment
Knowing when they come back
This afternoon
All their stuff will be scattered
On the street.
Strewn and invaded
By passerby,
Hungry vultures
Looking for treasures
Among a broken life’s
Savings.

No this person is
Beating themselves up:
Man, if I’d just done THIS
Or remembered to turn THERE
Or why didn’t I return THAT CALL?!
Silent, heavy hammer
Banging down
Insistent:
YOU RUINED IT ALL.
YOU LOST IT WHEN YOU HAD
THE CHANCE.
gone forever

Someone in Austin
Right this very minute
Has a grumbling, twisted
Stomach.
And there is absolutely
No food coming.
They are sitting behind a desk
In a school
They are sitting behind a desk
At the Goodwill
They are clinging to the hope
That someone is going to notice
The pain on their silent face and
Invite them to share
That sandwich in
The bottom of the lunchbox
Nestled near the spoon.

Sara Hickman
10/10/08
8:27 a.m.



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