A Child in Need
The following poem was written fifty years ago when I was still a teenager; it was inspired by a dream about a little boy enduring a famine, and the helplessness of his situation.
A few years ago, I learned about a couple in Etobicoke, ON who started an organization called Canadian Food for Children. Dr. Andrew Simone and his wife Joan and their army of volunteers have been serving the needs of these “children in need” for many years. I applaud their efforts and dedicate this poem to their organization.
I saw a child last evening, Perched upon a stone wall grey, Forlorn, in rags, and tears were there In eyes that feared the coming day. As I neared him, an object caught my eye Between his palms with tiny fingers clutching. Unaware, how cautiously he toyed it. Engrossed beyond our human conception. Suddenly startled by my presence, his treasure fell And he turned to keep from meeting my gaze. Then I saw the swollen stomach, the frail and flesh-starved bones; The frame that yearned for food so many days. I retrieved his toy and accepted the smile That shyly enveloped his alien face, My handkerchief relieved the shining drops And longed to dry the tears of all his race. I see this lad as hope for all his brothers, Starvation witnessed, proof of need; My prayers for him, for others everywhere say: “Use your Magic Loaf to multiply for food, And Faith, make seed.”