June 29, 2008
By Ariel Dunay, Alexandria, VA

I am just a kid at the age of thirteen,
do you really know what these tired eyes have seen?
My daddy went to war and hasn't come back for years,
maybe that's why mommy drinks those bottles full of tears.
We have little money, but with it, mom buys her stuff,
she shoots it up her arm and says I'll use it when life's rough.
At night, mommy leans over and whispers in my ears,
"Things will get better," she says, but I can see her tears.
I don't go to school because mom says it's all an act,
but there, kids get an education, and I know that for a fact.
Laugh, cry, smile, of frown? What's my emotion today?
I have to be strong, through thick and thin, just because there's no other way.
I live my life in fear in the projects of LA,
where life's unpredictable and thing's change everyday.
I don't believe my own mother, this I must confess,
won't somebody help me escape this thrashing mess?

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