Justice for the innocent

white painted wall with white wooden door bungalow house
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One child


She knew nothing of the poverty

her parents suffered.  She did not

know the meaning of the hungry

stomach she often experienced.


Yet, she did know that her stomach

often hurt, which she only expressed

through crying, or irritability,

which her parents often attributed

to her being a disobedient child,

wherein she was sent to her room,

where her hunger increased.


As she grew and was sent to school,

she began to notice the difference

in her appearance as opposed to others.


The dirt under her fingernails, the unkempt hair,

the wrinkled clothes, and the only time

her stomach did not hurt was through

the school breakfast and lunches.


This was the beginning of her

understanding of poverty;

poverty in The United States of America.


As she grew she saw that her

parents were both unemployed

and that her mother never finished

high school and that they used food stamps.


Often embarrassed at the grocery store

when her mother would pull out the

wadded bills from the government,

she sheepishly would look at the floor,

hoping none of her school mates were around,

and she was relieved when they

left the store and arrived in the safety of her home.


She often went to bed with

her stomach hurting painfully,

as sometimes there just was not

enough food for dinner and

she would curl up in a ball and go

to sleep.


So, it was with her until she was grown

and had children of her own, she

promised herself they would never go

to hungry.


Unlike her mother she finished high school,

and married a working man, so

she was able to provide meals

for her children so they never

went hungry.


Looking back on her childhood, she

knew why she had painful stomachs.

She realized then that

the government only allowed her

parents a certain amount of food stamps

per month and they usually would run out

of them at the end of the month.


She also recognized her parents’

inability to benefit from other

food programs.  She often

wondered why they never took

advantage of that and then she

thought of the several times her

parents had no car, or the car they

had often did not run, and they had

to rely on the grace of neighbors and friends.


She figured her parents did not want

to ask them to assist with yet

another burden of supplying food for their children.


She often thought of how others still suffer

in 2008 in The United States of America,

the richest land in the world, and how, even

though government agencies reach out

to the thousands of homes just

like hers growing up, there needed to be an increase

in the food stamp program.


She often thought of the thousands

of children coming home from

school not having snacks to eat,

or juice to drink, or to be lucky enough

to have supper every night.


She thought of the thousands of children

who had pains in their stomachs which

might often turn into psychological pain in them

adulthood, as she still suffered with pains

in her stomach even though she had

plenty of food.  She did not realize the

psychological dependence food had

on the developing child emotionally,

and the impact into adulthood.


Then she was angered at the government

for not supplying enough food

stamps to feed the children of

The United States of America.


Justice for the innocent

A Poem – Lorraine

















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