Born a poor sharecroppers son
Of nine children, the oldest one.
He never learned to read or write
And worked from sunup till night.
Poverty and hard times were his life
As the family struggled to stay alive.
Barely enough food to put on the table,
Some meat for the beans only when able.
His clothes had patches on patches
And shoes with nicks and scratches,
Hand-me-down wear from his dad
Were the only clothes he ever had.
Plowing the fields from dawn till dark
Six days a week until Sundays lark
When the family finally got rest
In the tiny shack where they nest.
Brothers and sisters he helped tend
While fences waited for his mend.
Through his youth he gave all he had
As best he could for Mom and Dad.
At eighteen he wed the neighbors daughter
The eldest of a farmer just like his father.
They had six kids after vows were spoken,
The circle of poverty goes 'round unbroken.
©Kenneth J. Ellison
April 7, 2004
Used With Permission
All Rights Reserved By Author