Friday, September 25, 2009

In Which I Am Chastened By A Scene At A Fast Food Joint

How old is he, the man we saw at noon,
A whisk broom and a dustpan in his hands,
A cannula connecting his nose to
A backpack tank of oxygen? He stands
Just slightly stooped, a hard-working rebuke
To how we haven't cared well for those folk
Who've toiled their lives away, then by some fluke
Of fate that's really more a bitter joke,
Though well-advanced in years, still find they're stuck
With no recourse but to take on such work
In fast-food clean-up, just to make the buck
Or two he needs to stay alive. The smirk
His supervisor gave us while this wage
Slave shuffled past still calls up rage.

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