“Who Am I?” by Kelly Fordon

Kelly Fordon


I have eaten all your almonds
because you left them
on the counter. A better person
would not have done it.
A slightly better person
would have done it,
but left a note.
You would have eaten
mine though you say
you would not rob a bank.
I would only rob a bank
if I ran out of other options.
I go to church
and copy the rules out
on my hand.
When I break one,
I get absolution
from the priest.
When I say penance,
I feel better right away.
I shouldn’t have yelled
at that woman, but she
is a bitch. I shouldn’t have
slapped her, but she deserved it.
I am going to pray
until I am no longer angry,
and if I am still angry,
I will take it out on the maid,
who is stupid,
who should have learned
to speak English,
and then she would not
have had to be a maid.
I should not buy
(insert word here)
But I never buy myself
anything really.
I have not bought anything
since last year when I
purchased the Mac.
I needed that for
my foundation.
It’s a non-profit
dedicated to helping
people with problems.
There are so many.

from Rattle #57, Fall 2017
Tribute to Rust Belt Poets

[download audio]


Kelly Fordon: “Even though I spent a lot of time in the Midwest as a child, I was not truly a resident of the Rust Belt until I moved to Michigan in the ’90s with my husband and settled in the suburbs of Detroit. At that time, I was shocked by the divisiveness between the city and suburbs. I remain in shock. This poem reflects some of what I have witnessed in terms of privileged sensibility and racism in the suburbs.” (website)

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