Don’t Cry My Children

A Poem by Stefanie Bennett

– after Monsanto and Dow Chemical

They scold you for being
Too big for your boots.
For back-chatting.
For singing in quiet places.
For feeding the animals.
For questioning the damnation
Of some; the elation
Of others. They question
The questioning. You must not
Cry, my children!
It happens because it happens.

Soon, you’ll learn to laugh
In all the right quarters.
Soon, you’ll learn to lie
With the best of them.
Soon, the answers will be
Covered by a bill-of-sale
You’ll slip into, comfortably.
The humans of this world
Clothe and cord their existence
In a way that costs the very
Earth… but not one red cent.

And –, as for the odd one of you,
They can’t take a chance
On the odds of a chance. The unusual
Is dangerous. A close watch is kept.
They scold with laws fit only
For the breaking. There’s…
The locking-up, the throwing away
Of keys. And a thing called ‘personality’.
You would not want to be
One of the oddities
Left crying?
Whatever you do

– Do not make the mistake
Of answering me.

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