My cousins had their own rooms. Each one of
Them; they lived in a big house. They went to
School in uniforms. Had a dog. Rowing
Practice. Ballet lessons. They drank enough
Milk. Usually when one of them out-grew
Something, their mother would give it to mine.
For me. Why throw it out when somebody
Could use it, right? They gave her other things
Too. Food. Soap. Rent. Her brother, my uncle, tried
To help her. Once, he offered to take me
In, let me go live with them and they’d bring
Me up like theirs. I was hiding outside
The room where he was talking about it.
My mom just laughed. She couldn’t give a shit.

Juleigh Howard-Hobson’s poetry has appeared in Coffin Bell, Anti-Heroin Chic, Pink Plastic House, Mooky Chick, Third Wednesday, Think Journal, The Lyric, Birds Fall Silent in the Mechanical Sea (Great Weather for Media), Lift Every Voice (Kissing Dynamite), and many other places. Noms: Pushcart, Best of the Net, Elgin, Rhysling. 

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