Summary: A poem.
Word Count: 444
A tiny baby boy born on a cold rainy night.
Straw and mud make up the floor
Where mother and child now rested.
No husband has she. The boy will learn to fight.
For he has no name, only an ugly label.
He grew up fast, he grew up hard and yet remained gentle.
Oh so young and yet provisions he must help provide.
Off to the mine to set a charge, it would put food on the table.
The grass is always greener over the hill, so went the thought.
He said he was of age as he enlisted to help the righteous cause.
A sharp eye for a gun, he was made valuable.
Yet in the end, it was futile for by the enemy, he was caught.
Unspeakable horrors for a boy of such tender age.
Filth, pain, hunger and that never relenting thirst.
They made him and those with him act like beasts.
Scavenging and clawing for life’s necessities, animals in a cage.
It can change a man when life is doled out in rations, whips and scorn.
He emerged from that hell hole still the age of a child
And yet mature beyond his years.
So much pain. So much anger. A boy beginning his journey as a man.
Taking any job just to get by. Still running from hurt. Eyes forlorn.
He heard she was sick.
His Mama in that dusty dirty town where he was born.
Go to her, for she needs her boy. Her son. Her only one.
Catch the wind and ride hard. Must get there in time.
With her last dying breath, she tells the secret of a long ago love.
A name for him, her son. He must claim what is rightfully his own.
No time to mourn.
He turns in the direction that will carry him home. A family.
He isn’t just another hired hand as the truth is laid bare.
He is their flesh and blood. But how will she accept him?
“If you were my son, I would tell you to be proud.”
“if you were my son.” The bond is made.
He now calls her “Mother.”
Still there will be demons to fight.
Sometimes late at night, the dreams come and cut into his slumber.
Only now, he has a place. He belongs.
Now no one can take away what has always belonged to him.
A name, a home, a family,