Bring Me Your Tired
Bring Me Your Poor . . .

Within the frame
of my camera
there is a different people
a quiet strong variety
a submissive crushed
in worn winter coats
and rumpled
washed faces
It is Monday
in the welfare line.

Children wait
with Fat Santa music
floating in the ear
from caged
protected speakers
where thieves
do not appear
where they wait
for outdated cherry bagels
cans, and candycanes
and listen for the social worker
to finally say their mother's name.

Where is thy brother's keeper
and sister to hold
thy hand
as you walk
in humiliation
within the promised land.

I will not
take the photograph
and quickly
walk away

only to hear the supervisor
demand that I betray
the situation
that I document
his good
donation and reputation
for he and others
the broken people
(at least for the holiday)
so to receive
plastic plaques
with plastic smiles
holding angel trophies
for camera miles
of media footage
with Fat Santa music
where they account
for their cherry bagels
unwanted cans
and candycanes
in the promised land.

by Lupita C. Saucedo

© 1998 Kaleidoscope

Kaleidoscope Online

Last update: 14 January 1999


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