Social Justice Poetry

A Visit Seeking Charity | A Social Justice Poem by Roy Pullam

She moved uneasily
From one foot
To the other
Outside the Salvation Army office
Shouldering a child
Squirming in her arms
Her bruises still fresh
Her husband in jail
Once too often
His drunken temper
Struck out at her
The child wanted down
His impatience showing
The mother broken
Never in her imagination
Would she need charity
But here she was
Desperation vanquishing pride
Waiting for a food order
Some money
To pay the rent
Another woman
Passed her
Her plastic bag full
Meat, bread and can goods
Hazel smiled
As she welcomed
The reluctant lady
Soon tears
Accompanied her story
Hazel took her hand
Offering a prayer
And a shoulder
Hazel had heard the story
The plot the same
Only the names different
Filling the order
Giving a bear
To the boy
The woman thankful
Promising future generosity
When things were different
When her husband changed
She left
With a thanks
Over her shoulder
Hazel knew
She would be back
The story never changes

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