Poem: Decades of the Refugees

Reflections on my native country and its near term social regression.

Decades of the Refugees

It’s the decade of the refugee
    a third-world rising in America
Downsized and confused, casualties
    out on the street, wondering
    where they went wrong
Blown from the moorings
    of traditional jobs,
    without even a forecast
    of bad weather

A job is a job is a job, too often
    a struggle without meaning,
    bound in chains of consumerism
Displaced, replaced persons,
    looking over their shoulders
Coming home to the question
    how was your day?
    without the foggiest
    and reaching for a drink

Bombed-out without a war,
    yet no one’s serving doughnuts
Like all refugees across the world,
    these too are powerless,
    picking among the ruins
    for what still has use
Balanced only for the moment, silent
    as victims are always silent
    and hollow-eyed with fear

Holding on and holding back
    in times that make a joke
    of the way things were
A house, a car, dinner at six
    and college for the kids
Not a chance in hell these days
For-sale signs pop up here and there
    on a way of life
    and someone has to hit the road

Lost in a country full of maps,
    impossible to find their way,
    flying blind
Metaphorically burning the furniture
    to keep warm
Their fathers built an open country
    and now it’s closing down
Leaving a legacy of confusion
    as the borders all are closing

And yet we’ve come this way before,
    survived the dust-bowl days
    of a great depression,
    to climb back again and thrive
The nation nearly sank back then,
    but these are different times
    joblessness in soaring markets
Maybe it’s time to look back again
    to try and find a road ahead
Poetry Collection: Broken Pieces
This poem is included in
Jim Freeman's
poetry collection
available here in print
or as an e-Book
in your favorite formats.