A Sandal And A Soul - Poem by TEDDY MOSES
If anybody asks me what my father does, I will tell them that he is a cobbler,
He sits down the corner and patiently awaits at his stand in anticipation of tending his master,
Daily, he sips the foul smell of suffocated feet and dirty socks,
He pierces through the leather, sometimes injuring his finger,
He soaks in scorn and the anger of the disturbed high and mighty,
At times being called upon to keep the most dark secrets,
Sometimes he sits all day without pay or hay, but to me, he is my hero.
If anybody asks me what my father does, I would tell he is a guard,
He wears his heart on his sleeves leaving his chest bare and empty,
He watches the star every night in song with the nocturnal, keeping an eye on his bosses,
He endures the rain and leaves my mom and younger sister lonely through the crispy cold nights,
He suffers scars and broken bones thanks to the ruthless thieves,
He has paid fines and slept behind bars because of his un-understanding boss,
Yet still he wields a smile and says his boss is the best in the whole world.
If you ask me what my mother does, I will tell you she runs a kiosk,
She basks in the scorching sun all day to bake the love of her kids,
All day she hawks the two tomatoes and three onions she has had for a while,
Everyday she ogles with the cruel levy officer who at times takes all she has made,
Then when the merciless torrents come down upon her with wind it destroys her stall,
She is forced to fast and at times stop her kiosk to look up more dues,
She buckles under the mistrust and humiliation of her in-debtor who just wont pay,
She dreams of a day when our stall will be full with grocery,
Sometimes she sits day long with no hope coming along.
If you ask me what my mother does, I will tell you she is a plantation worker.
Her eyes have turned into permanent red due to the constant itching and scratching,
Her chest has been reduced into rot and a sympathetic air balloon,
Infested by all manner of poisonous fumes that keep pests at bay,
She knows not another source of livelihood than at the hand of her merciless tycoons,
She has been forced to bundle us up into a hardly spacious room,
And to satisfy our hunger for basic needs with the cold sweat of her hands,
Sometimes she works all day in dismay, and ends up in disarray.
If you ask me what my sister does, I will tell you she is a maid,
She waits patiently at the table and eats only a morsel in stable,
She bares the cold and angry treatment of her insecure madam,
She has earned bruises and a sour eye from her cruel employer,
She has had to endure the pain of the blisters on her hands from the innumerable chores,
And a shattered self from the constant bedroom servitude of her master,
To end up on the streets, with a shattered dream, pregnant with her masters bastard,
To contend with the scoundrels that would nib her away, piece by piece.
If you ask me what my parents do, I will tell you they are wanderers,
My father picks up odd jobs at factories and construction sights,
Which when missed, he spends the day rubbing his scrotum to impotence on the boda boda bicycle,
While my mom, she suffers a bad back from bending over the laundry and floors of her tycoons,
But they are proud in raising us up in love, constantly teaching us to grow out of our limitations,
They teach us humanity and the other side of the coin,
They teach humility and the art of appreciating everyone else,
Sometimes they cry, we cry, I cry, but in the end, they teach us that the sandal, has a soul
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