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Mother Says

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At night, I hear my parents fight after
we go another day without food.
Mother says, “No money this week
means not enough food to go around.”

Mother says, “Brother’s sick. I’m worried about him surviving.
He’s as skinny as a pole and can hardly walk.”
Father tells us not to drink the water.
So we walk two miles to the closest well.

Mother says, “More than just our family, town,
and country have the same problem.
Someone will always have it worse,
and we need to be thankful for what we have.”

Mother says, “Farmers abandoned their fields
when war and conflict moved in.”
Father complains of no food
even if we had money.

Mother sends us to the field to play in
our paradise, where birds fly like steam from a cup of soup,
grass blows like noodles in a bowl and
wildflowers scatter like vegetables in rice.

Mother says, “People from a far away place
are coming to build a water well in our village.”
Father tells us the new well won’t fix our aching bellies.
I hear my parents fight at night after we go another day without food.
 




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