Great Mother Poverty
by Luke Tyson
Written Jan 10, 2021
The people start at the house and madly run to the water;
Chases us all,
Before time expires when we are
To our starting positions –
Whoever she caught now chases with her,
And some run again.
Poverty, child at the hip,
heterochromatic eyes flashing blue and gray,
Arguing stridently in the muddied lean-to,
An institution never known to me, but
Situated properly in the mulched ground beyond the grass
Of the backyard of my childhood home –
“What? No, you can’t,” I exclaim. His face is freckled
beneath a burgundy
“Yes, I can,” he retorts.
“Why do you believe that? Why would you want to?” I whispered.
“Because… I make the most milk.”
I, offended, slapped him –
Sometimes it feels very good to be offended –
She shouts like an unmasked divinity.
Her sharks and minnows gather against me,
“How could you! How could you!”
Their writhing court of indignation
“Let me speak! Let me speak!
Decide for yourselves!”
I sink into the hardwood floor.
Poverty looms over me,
Her body is like stillness’ lake
Bound to Echinacea
His face is like a boyish round
Pressed to sliding glass
Their bodyminds a likeness take
As bread crumbs in my bed
Their body be like Summer ground
If death would let us pass
Luke was born in North Carolina, but raised in Pensacola, Florida. He currently attends St. John's College at their campus in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He works as a tutor.