My mother thin in her yellow dress,

the dress each Sunday saw.

The large women sparkled,

laughing in the glow of their prosperity,

exchanging empty "bless your heart"'s.

Fat bellies and wallets abundant in

The House of the Lord.


My house was thin.


Thin walls. Thin meals. Thin blankets.


"Hard times are a blessing"

said the ghost in yellow. 

The windows of  her soul saw 

cold nights, empty pantries,

children invisible,

callased feet, roaches,

constant darkness.

But all blessings.


Hard times are blessings.

What of the good?


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