Who Cries for Me?

 

I died on 9th Street and St. Clair.

Please let me tell you how I got there.

 

Raised in poverty of an immigrant pair,

I was one of ten children with not much to share.

 

By day Papa worked hard but by night drank like a fish.

Mama was a big woman who could whip anything into a great dish.

 

All nine brother and sisters were as cold as could be.

Growing up with them they never cared about me.

 

Average looks or a little less,

I certainly was not the type to play chess.

 

One by one us kids left home.

Oddly enough, I stayed close by and didn’t roam.

 

My education was scarce as I struggled to get by.

For a while I even became a clown, although I was shy.

 

With few friends and no hobbies, my life was a bore.

Days and nights were spent waiting for anyone to knock on my door.

 

In my younger years booze had been an intermittent friend.

But as the years passed, it became my comforter at every bend. 

 

Endless nights I cried in my one room behind the bar.

I never thought my life would end up so lonely and bizarre.

 

Then, that day came with a sudden sharp pain.

I clung to the street pole as people wondered if I was insane.

 

There was no time to think of things present or past.

My life was over and perhaps I would have some peace at last.

 

For six months I laid under the cold sheet.

Not one relative or friend made claim to my body did the Coroner meet.

 

No one cried—no tears were shed.

In potter’s field I laid forgotten and dead.

 

 

(In loving memory of my uncle Willie.  You really are missed.)