The old man sits on his front porch. He will
Not sell the wooden birds he carves or trees
He started in his back yard. Cold winds chill
Him though he wears a sweater in the breeze –
A sweater that his wife made him but can
Not sell out of their home. The check they get
Is not enough – a little more would fan
A warmth of dignity and ease their debt,
Would let them feel more useful once again.
But they are not allowed to use their home
To make a better life. It is a sin
To take an old man’s livelihood. The loam
He plants his trees in is his own, but he
Is daily robbed of hope and dignity.