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Mother Sago

by Michael Dusch

January 2nd at 6:31 am the world turned her eyes toward me.
13 of my children were buried deep in my womb.
I provided them with heat, a livelihood, and a purpose.
I love my children.

I am virtuous and I am cruel.
My children are forged under my unforgiving skin,
Hardened like the black rock that forms my bones.
My children become strong because of me.

Outsiders mock my children.
They call us ignorant,
Backward,
Unrefined.

So I keep my children close within my arms,
They will never understand our culture,
Our customs,
Our pride.

They call my children xenophobic,
Because they will not be like them.
They shun my children as primitive,
My children cling to one another.

January 2nd at 6:31 am the world turned her eyes toward me.
13 of my children are trapped below.
There is suffering above.
There is news to be made.

They bring their news trucks.
They bring their reporters from New York.
They prepare their graphics.
They film my children.

For 41 hours we are no longer rednecks and hillbillies.
We are "strong"
"Brave"
"Faithful"

They sing our praises for their viewers.
They are entertainers.
They do not care

For 41 hours they ask about our lives, our culture.
I have always been here,
My children remained unchanged.

January 3rd, at 11:55 pm they cry out they are alive
Tears of Joy, Laughter, and Prayer.
What a story,
Their graphics say "a West Virginia Miracle."

January 4th at 2:50 amů
They were wrong.
12 of my children died within.
Stillborn.

Now the trucks and reporters are gone.
For 41 hours they used my children as characters in their play.
There are other stories to be told.
Again we are forgotten

 

Reprinted here with permission of the Jewelweed Editor.
© 2006. Wheeling Jesuit University, Inc.


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