You stacked stones with muscles and broad shoulders
until they buried you at forty-five
forgotten in some pauper's grave
your name never etched on marble domes
but your hopes spared new generations the same fate.
We packaged your promise in a bright package
and called it our birthright
every new promise, a calling card
used for trading your denims and your cars
for cheap packages from abroad
rethreads, things called happy toys.
(C) rosaria williams