Picture courtesy of Norman Rockwell. Picture link.


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Mick Coyle


The Gift of Poverty

Our school days are gone, we surrender our youth

Our fantasies are shattered, we discover the truth

The only way forward, we are led to believe

Too young in our mind, too young to conceive


The factories are calling, excitement to our mind

Epoch of an era to which we are blind

Delusions of grandeur flow through our brain

Borderline slavery, we are soon to attain.


Thunder of hammers that beat steel to shape

The heat of the furnace, the sweat down our nape

A twelve hour shift, for a pittance of pay

No time for the family, no time to play.


The cough of the sparrow, the bark of the hound

The billowing smoke, from the chimneys around

Black face of the children, scruffy and pale

Dressed only in rags and legs like brush stales.


And when work is over, we stagger away

And crawl to our beds, until the next day

But try as we may, we can not escape

The gift of poverty, our legacy and fate.


Copyright © 2007 Mick Coyle