In His Office

In his office,
sun streaming for the first time
in the mid-afternoon
and trying to find words
while keeping the tears
from spilling over into my voice,
so shaky and sounding desperate,
I search for the ways
to explain a world so foreign
to him, whose color and charisma
keep him in high-rise apartments
and tailored suits.
But this world, so familiar
to me aches again
at the memory of sitting
at the top of the stairs
when siblings were to bed
and hearing parents
in yelling, hushed tones
about not enough money
and mostly empty cupboards–
which is why I hate powdered milk–
and being so scared
and not knowing why.
He wanted to help,
but he didn’t know
what to do with me.
And the sun continues to shine.

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