Friday, February 1, 2013

Foster Child Visits Real Mom


by Carolyn Cecil

                            Above North Avenue,
summer sweat on once
scrubbed marble steps,
90 degrees dripping.
Upstairs, plastic covered couch,

lead-paint chipped windows,
grimy halls, mystery stench,
exterminator toxins.
Poverty's perfume.
Ponytailed six year old,

quietly distressed, best
dress on; awaits decision.
Legs sticking to the couch,
what does she think of
the monolithic question.

Who gets to live with whom?
A frenzied social worker,
blindly guides.  Chooses.
Stuck on rewind decades
later; prickly doubts loom.

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