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Welfare Case #199,999,999 (Hunger Claws At Them Both)

Welfare Case #199,999,999
Hunger Claws At Them Both

softly pattering
on a dirty window pane.
chain lightning
floods the room
with nature's light.
the only sight
since they cancelled
her electrical power
in the upstairs flat
in the worst part of town.
a desperate hour
young unwed mother
barely in her teens
holds a crying baby
who seemingly
cannot be consoled.
they will be homeless
on the morrow
yet she tries
in spite of all
of her thin hope,
claws at them both...

Style / type: 
Free verse
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
What did you think of my title?
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
How was the beginning/ending of the poem?
Editing stage: 
Content level: 
Not Explicit Content


You have really captured the plight of many homeless people here. Nicely done.

There's no way to make this a lighter piece.

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I think what nails it is the last line. it is good to have your practiced eye upon my work.

*hugs, Cat

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author comment

the sparseness of the lines, which only reinforces
the depth of the poem. Your title gives pause to the reader
as though she has been abandoned by the very agency that
is supposed to help her and her baby. Your language use is very good
The beginning and the end are smoothly joined in the middle.

I would just point out a couple of typos:

[pain] should be [pane]
[lightning] instead of [lightening]

I don't think that it would hurt to add an [a] to:
"holds [a] crying baby"

A truly tragic scene...
that is repeated all too often.

Hugs, from ~ Geez and the boys.

Challenges Titles have to be written like this:
Example: My Mother or whatever title, then you go to the dropdown and enter it into the Challenges # ?
Otherwise, you will not be eligible for a certificate!

for your eagle-eye! I knew i could count on your valued help! I will take care of those things mentioned. It happened to me at age 18. the agency said that my husband who abandoned us must take care of us...he was long gone...the only thing left to me was to take my son to an adoption agency...than I was on the streets on my own...

*hugs, Cat


can you believe that this guy came to me a few years later, asking to be taken back?

When someone reads your work
And responds, please be courteous
And reply in kind, thanks.

author comment

A sorry tale though eloquently put. I'd be interested to know the background. Makes me think of the sad ongoing events currently enfolding in the Ukraine but I think that's on everyone's mind these days.

I wouldn't change a word and I want to read more regards John :)

some of the history/background is in my comment to Geezer (above) I'll add to it here: I was very ill with P.I.D. (pelvic inflammatory disease) and sick at heart that I had adopted out my son. some people in a commune took me in and got me help. (I had to pretend that I was single to get it) it seems like only the immoral can get help in Minneapolis (which is where I am from.) I yearned for my son for several years in fact I still have a longing... I recently was informed that he died in his teens, from pneumonia. the adoption agency forwarded a letter(I wrote) to his adoptive parents. that was their response..."He is dead!!!" they were good christian folk and the salt of the earth. I asked if I could have a photograph of my/their son and they slammed the door in my face.... just one more bad experience with christians...

*hugs, Cat


I forgot... my mother and oldest sister each offered to take my son (separately) to adopt him provided I get lost somewhere. knowing how I was raised and thrown to the wolves I vehemently declined. they threatened to take me to court and have me declared unfit, to take my son. this was the other sister's husband not the one who raped me and abused me for a few years. (I asked for help, but they called me a liar)that is another story!

When someone reads your work
And responds, please be courteous
And reply in kind, thanks.

author comment
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