Dogs 2012

WE KILL OUR OWN
(1/18/12)


"it used
to be
so different"

she slowly
shook
her head
and gazed blindly
into
the distance

"people
used
to take care
of each
other"

I didn't
know what
to say
to her

they had raised
their children
and grandchildren
to be independent

to take
advantage
of opportunity
and technology

they wanted
better
for us
than they had
for themselves

they couldn't
predict
economic collapse
and financial ruin
making
our investments
worthless

they couldn't
foresee
a generation
that would have
to work
from graduation
to grave
just
to survive

they couldn't
fathom
a large block
of the population
continuing
to choose
to live
off subsidies
from the government
straining our resources
to the breaking
point

they thought
it would be
as it always
had been

savings plans

Christmas clubs

generous
retirements

self sufficiency

the good life
which had been
sought
for decades

and close knit
families
and neighbors
to survive
any shortfalls
that might
occur

~

I had
to get back
to the
job

"I have
to leave
Grandma"

500 miles
away

"I have
to be
in the office
at 7
tomorrow
morning"

we hugged
goodbye
and I left
that dear
98 year old
woman
sitting alone
in a nursing
home

waiting
for family
and neighbors
who seldom came
due to distance
obligations
or death

it wasn't
her
fault

she
had simply
outlived
all the niceties
and connections
of the past

~

I hope
that she sees
another
Spring