The chubby cheeked child pressed his teary
face against the cold metal box, then deeply
burrowed to find the breast, that nurtured
him, empty as his mother’s body struggled
with starvation instead of promised salvation.
The pieces of silver exchanged brought her
hope of a golden place; where work was to
be in plenty, where people lived in safety
and her beautiful child educated, a rated,
respected man of hard work and honour.
Crushed together someone called on their
God to help, but no avenging angel winging
to their aid. Someone tried beating through
steely sides, but they had no tools only tired
debilitated bodies and no space to move.
Someone found voice and cried for help,
but no one heard, they feared none cared.
she heard someone gasp and fall and knew
another body lay like an Autumn leaf and
each of them will fall to rot in this hole of hell.
Listening they heard a vehicle pass by and
cursed the car’s ignorance of their plight.
Fighting for breath in the foetid, fear filled
air, they hear again and cry out in reaction
that this will lead to ending incarceration.
Sounds and more sounds and the mother
shifted the mewling infant in her sweating
arms and prayed for the help to be true.
With opening doors came hope, water,
food, medics alongside cruel diplomats who
send them back to whence they came, and
the betrayal of money spent for freedom,
leaves her empty pockets to protect the son,
of her womb, fatally wounded by poverty
and immigration’s actions they lie in a