I lie in a hospital bed No name to my face Abandoned babe, Small and skinny, Disease infested Death knocking- You stop Stare Move on. But I doubt you’ll forget a face like mine.
I sit at a busy street; Six year old beggar, Runny nose, Lice infested, Swollen belly, Hunger biting- You stare Walk by. But I doubt you’ll forget a face like mine.
I stand at the roadside; Twelve years I’ll make tonight, Too small my clothes, Skinny body, freezing cold Eyes popping n all, Scared of the male prowlers You walk by- Pity and jeer. But I doubt you’ll forget a face like mine.
I squat in a seemingly abandoned toilet; Eighteen years last week, Metallic hunger down myself, Little foetus bleeding out- You see me, Call the police, Not the doctors! Gang up Beat me. But I doubt you’ll forget a face like mine.
I sit outside my slum; Twenty four years old last month, A limp in my walk, Broken bones n scars, Our kids’ hiding- He’s back home, Their father! You whisper, Point fingers But I doubt you’ll forget a face like mine.
I am running away now; Thirty two years old two months ago My children with me Nowhere to go But am leaving The streets my friend… You despise me, Family wrecker, But I am leaving- And I doubt you’ll ever forget a face like mine.
I am lying on my death bed; Forty five years of age last November, My face too old for my age My body too frail to fathom My grandchildren- The few that approach me They love me! It’s all that matters. I am dying content I made peace with my God And now- you may forget a face like mine.Pamela Orogot This poem emerged second in the 5th BN Poetry Award