God, Don’t Let Bessie Die! (1930s Memoir)

Disaster strikes when the cow gets down.

Nutsrok

Daddy came in to supper, worried to death.  Bessie, our cow had had a calf and had “got down.”  This was a catastrophe. “Getting down” meant certain death for the cow and a disaster for us. “Oh, Lord!  What in the world will we do?  We’ve got to have milk for the kids.  And we’ll lose the calf, too.”  Mama was calm, not panicking, so, I knew this was

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…and feel ashamed…

Art by Rob Goldstein
Writings from homeless people in Clarion Alley

At night I hide beneath my blanket like a
boy afraid of the dark and feel ashamed.

I hear sweet music and remember
something good and feel ashamed.

I see photos of murder victims and wonder
what they thought in those last moments
and feel ashamed.

I walk past weddings and imagine the bride #
and groom screwing and feel ashamed.

I reach for the ghost of a long dead
lover and feel ashamed.

I open my eyes to discover that I’m
still alive and feel ashamed.

(c) Rob Goldstein 2016