Collective Unrest

 

Disparity

December 6, 2018

Originally published in The Moon Magazine, 2017

We only honor the greediest–
Carnegie, Rockefeller, Trump, Hearst–
and never speak of more humble chiefs
who chose to pay themselves less
than a thousand times their workers rate.

Just as no one remembers the name
of the humble apartments behind the Vatican.

When I was twenty I saw St. Peter’s,
its orgy of polychrome marbles
a shrine to papal conceit
built by thousands of peasants.

Did they go home every night
to half-starved wives in broken-down shanties,
and dandle malnourished children
on underpaid, bone-weary knees?

How much greater would our world be
with no Carnegie Hall
and no Carnegie slums.

 

Charles Joseph Albert works as a metallurgist in San Jose, California, where he lives with his wife and three boys. His work (the poetry and fiction, not the metallurgy–that would be pretty cool!) has appeared recently in First Lit Review, FreedomFiction, Dual Coast, The Wifiles, Asissi, The Ibis Head Review, the MOON, Chicago Literati, the Literary Hatchet, the Lowestoft Chronicle, and The Literary Nest.

Please follow and like us:
error
Newer Post

Esperanzado

She is lavender and daffodils finding strength in their stems on a day that the wind has heavy breath. She is an intermediary between generations weaving songs into patterns of light and spreading hymns through a stained-glass window. She is…
Read
Older Post

Got My Ladder

I’d get the ladder, my dad said. Take it out of the garage, pull it past the garbage cans, through the gate, lean it against the front of the house, by the roses. Pack a picnic, fill the cooler with…
Read
Random Post

Pink Star

Dear Shaj Guess what? I am number one in English. Ok. So I am not really number one. But I am almost number one. I came number 12 in the exam. Are you proud of me? I know you are…
Read
Random Post

AM I STILL HERE?

Everyday my Aunt Catherine, who outlived the rest of the family, would wake up and say “Am I still here?” Disappointed, she made tea, fed her bird, and let the light in. I thought man, she is a downer. Why…
Read
Random Post

How to Write a Headline Without Telling the Whole Story

Please click below to read Allie Marini's poem, "How to Write a Headline Without Telling the Whole Story," which was written using a newspaper headline where an unarmed civilian was killed by police (2015). How to Write a Headline Without…
Read
Random Post

The Bridge

I heard Spanish first. I slipped into the world deafened by my mother’s cries. Her songs were familiar. Her voice was familiar. But her anguish was primordial. Her anguish didn’t need to be broken into meaning. It lived in the…
Read