ENGINE BLOCK HOTDOGS MEMOIR 1991

{Recently went on vacation and lived on hard boiled eggs, veggie cheese and pita. Nothing really changes. On a good note, lost 2 pounds instead of gaining! Here’s a repost of a poem about moving to Florida with my sons}:

horizon engine block

Hard to glamourize being poor

Especially when shopping at the Scratch & Dent store

My hourly wage was four twenty five

Just barely enough to keep us alive

Two teenagers eat a lot…

We couldn’t afford the air conditioner

No help from the county commissioner

Didn’t know about free food and power

Just lived from second to minute to hour

But I was out of icy Philly and in Florida…

My sons wanted to see the beach

An hour’s drive, certainly in reach

But no money for charcoal and BBQ-ing

Wanted to impress them for family renewing

Why don’t they like peanut butter and jelly, my favorite…?

Bought cheap hot dogs and wrapped in buns and foil

Couldn’t afford ice and didn’t want them to spoil

Opened up the hood of my dusty old car

Saw the engine block and had an idea so bizarre

To us trailer trash, engines are for cooking…

Parked by the Gulf, sat on the seaweedy beach

That day my sons learned what I was trying to teach

As we munched on the lunch

I delivered my punch:

Stay in school and never, ever be poor…

© 2014 Clarissa Simmens, Poetry of Memory: Six Decades from the Space Time Continuum

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