My great-grandfather was a beggar’s heir,
A boy slave sold to the Wild West,
Who, with what twenty years of toiling spared,
Returned a bit richer and blessed.
My grandfather was born the rich man’s boy,
Who watched his mum lynched by a mob
And his father’s estate plundered, destroyed;
From the robbers’ jail he ran off.
My Dad was one of the fugitive’s sons:
Conceived in a converted morgue,
Born with a false name and little else, one
Piteous life the slum absorbed.
Here I wonder what will my story be—
A life of riches or of poverty?
Beggar, slave, fugitive, slummer and me—
Que sera, sera—what will be, will be.
The featured image is a cherished old photo of my late grandfather, the “fugitive”. (To those unfamiliar with post-war history, no, Grandpa was not a criminal, only an unfortunate victim caught in a corrupted era.) Friends and I were playing Two Truths and a Lie at a Christmas party, wherein my family history came in quite handy to supply a handful of incredible truths; then I thought to myself I might as well wrap them up in a poem. Voila!