Nobody’s Treasure

August 6, 2009

This came to me after I saw a video about the recent rise in the number of babies in South Africa being given up for adoption due to the global economic crisis. How sad it is to hear that they have remained in the orphanages, because no one can afford to adopt them either.

She lovingly places you
inside a metal box
on a thin, cotton blanket
padded with electric sensors
hidden behind a wooden door
that says “Door of Hope”.

Silently, she closes the latch
and turns away —
Shadows fall on the ground
around her – casting shame
in her direction.
Despair and desperation
mingle on the ground beneath her feet
in the form of footprints leading
to and from her ramshackle village.

I understand
how your mother
must feel —
She knows she can’t
keep you with her —
She has no money for food
No place to keep you
safe and warm
No one to help her
help you.

I can only imagine
how you will feel
When you grow older
and begin to question
who you are
where you came from
and why
you were born
only to become
Nobody’s Treasure.