America, once beautiful

Location

shreds of winter hair shroud stippled skin,
weathered by one, two, many weeks
crouched and soliciting in the steady glow
of our capital’s sun. Once full lips shrivel,
struggle to form the one simple word
our city streets numbed to millions.
Pleased by rare feigned interest, is she
ready to take advice instead of scraps
of paper and metal, which hold real value?
Still full lips unseal, to the melody of metal
on metal as withered fingers shake the
styrofoam cup. Words of wisdom rejected, still
full wallets close up, and pass by no longer
willing to impart their infinite knowledge.

shreds of cardboard pieced together
to form a small sign read almost legibly:

“change?”
“change for America?”
“change we can believe in?”

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