My Hopes, Memories and Dreams

Lost and Forgotten

Discharged into the arms of a stranger              
Wearing  a government badge
They sent him out into the world
All of three weeks old
“Public Hospital”
Stamped in blue ink
Across the back of his borrowed jumpsuit
Not even a bag
To carry his mother’s milk
Let alone to pack some dignity and respect into
And they said it was okay…

“This is your new home”
They told him
Pointing to the bare grey concrete floors
And the musty, worn sheets on the bed
A frozen pie for dinner
$1.99..is what you are worth
While he watched them eat steak 
It was a roof over his head
He should be grateful
And he was reminded so every day…

He dared not move
As they pinned down his arm
For “You have been a bad boy !”
Said the scalding hot water
As he looked the other way
But “..accidents happen”
The perpetrator said
Easier to turn a blind eye
He watched the officials slink away
After telling him he was “okay”

These are the stories of the little ones…
Who simply want a safe space to play
And ‘tell someone whom you trust in’
Is all we have to say

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16 responses

  1. Colleen, I don’t even know where to begin this is so good. Poignant, heartwrenching, so honest it leaves my heart with an ache and my eyes with tears. Amazing! You are becoming a voice for children everywhere.

    April 29, 2010 at 12:14 am

    • Thank you Sara. I have so much to say on the topic, sometimes I don’t know where to begin. So many stories…all real..all tragic and too often unspoken of.

      April 29, 2010 at 11:07 am

      • It takes serious courage to do the work you do and not cave in. I do not know Australian English vs. American English, so let me ask if you intended to write “scolding” (as in yelling at) or “scalding” (as in very hot water)? Either way, it’s an amazing poem. You should be extremely proud. The growth you have shown in your writing in just the few months since I met you is astonishing. I am proud to call you friend. You will be a voice for children everywhere.

        April 29, 2010 at 11:24 am

      • Thank you again Sara for your words of encouragement. The writing helps to feel I am doing something productive by sharing the stories.

        Yes, I have already changed “scolding” to “scalding”, which I meant in the first place !

        Hope you are well.
        xox

        April 29, 2010 at 11:30 am

  2. No, it’s not okay.
    This story, and
    the way you worded it —
    even though we know
    it happens every day,
    we hate to be reminded.
    It’s humbling…too humbling.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:19 am

    • I’m glad you agree it is not okay 🙂 Not everyone seems to think like us…tragically.

      April 30, 2010 at 10:56 am

  3. dustus

    Am I at the right blog? lol See you’ve made a change or two. Very nice.
    Great informative poem with a strong ending.
    Have a great weekend, Colleen 🙂

    May 9, 2010 at 1:13 am

    • HaHa ! did I surprise you ? I wonder how long I will last with this theme…?! Thanks for the comments re the poem. Very close to my heart. 🙂

      May 9, 2010 at 4:58 pm

  4. Colleen, what a heart breaking write. No child should be subject to such abuse. You should join & share your writing at todayswriting.com We are hosting a contest where one lucky winner will be winning $100.00

    May 13, 2010 at 12:11 pm

    • Hi Rose, thanks for visiting. I will take a look at your site.

      May 17, 2010 at 10:48 am

  5. Very tragic, you really brought the sadness out well. No child deserves to go through something like that.

    May 19, 2010 at 8:13 pm

    • You are correct ofcourse, no child deserves such treatment but sadly this is what is occuring in our world and not enough people stand up and say “it is not ok”.

      May 19, 2010 at 8:16 pm

  6. My first reaction is to swing and hit the person who allowed this to happen.

    Then I thought. It might have been me. Someone who allows the government to deal with a “situation” most would rather keep a blind eye to . . . institutional abuse, whether it be a child, the elderly, the infirm.

    God, I wish we could give each of us more love and compassion.

    michael j

    June 18, 2010 at 11:55 pm

  7. hdunny

    This is so incredible. I work for department of child and family services and it is all to often that we see these poor children come into the group home I work at completely lost & broken. It then becomes my job to try to help them put the pieces back together. I love this poem it is so wonderful. Thank you for shining light on these children who all to often cant find a voice of there own.

    You are amazing.

    June 30, 2010 at 12:52 pm

  8. Shadyah

    Colleen,
    Glad to see you writing more, you have so much to give, and I just enjoy reading the ‘music’ from your heart…

    January 24, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    • Shadyah ! Thank you for saying so and for visiting my blog =) Miss You !

      January 24, 2011 at 1:35 pm

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