post-modern American young lady at an Animal rescue dinner auction
“everyone has the same shot at life.
the poor just don’t try,
they deserve it,
they could have anything
but they’re lazy.
we’re all born the same, it’s
how hard you work that makes
you a success.”
tara said at the Washington D.C. animal
rescue annual fundraiser auction.
“you think everyone’s brains and
chances are the same” I asked
“definitely” tara said and then
squared her shoulders to me.
the other five people dressed to the nines
in dresses and tuxedos,
twirled their johnny walker and slightly smiled
knowing a debate had just begun.
“so is albert einstein so smart because he studied the most?”
“you don’t think so?”, tara said
“then is beethoven so amazing because he practiced the most?”
“so you could play basketball as good as michael jordan,
if you practiced enough?”
“well no that’s physical, I don’t have the body for that.”
“the brain is physical, you don’t think it develops differently?”
“that’s what I’m saying, you have to fill it, stuuudy, work hard.”
“no I mean while the baby is forming, I mean what about the insane.”
“drugs, destroy the brain.”
“not all the insane have taken drugs, what about the mentally disabled.”
“that’s different, they are born damaged.”
“I just think each brain is different from the next.”
“they’re the same at the start, it’s what you do with it that counts.”
the group continued to smile.
it was an intellectual wrestling match.
but I didn’t like her, she was too sure of herself
and would roll her eyes and huff and puff
and say ‘oh my god’ under her breath when I spoke.
“so everyone has a fare shot at life,
it’s what you do with it that makes you a success?”
I put back on the board.
“yes exactly, people are just lazy, anyone can become something,
go to a good college, georgetown, get a good job,
people choose to be bums, it’s outrageous.”
“so the girl who’s father went to yale and is a ceo of a
multimillion dollar company has the exact same chances as a girl
who is constantly molested, beaten and verbally destroyed by her
drunken father, who has gotten her pregnant at 15?”
“of course she does.”
“the exact same chances?”
“georgetown doesn’t discriminate.”
“I never said either girl was black or white.”
“well they don’t, she could get in if she worked really hard.”
“do you think it might be tougher for her then the other girl?”
“it’s tough for everyone.”
then an older woman, one of the woman who helped
put on the event, spoke up.
“tara there is a huge tragic difference, it’s not the same for us all.
let’s go inside the action is about to begin.”
and we all smiled at one another and walked with our drinks
to the animal rescue auction.
Available in my new book Let The Poet’s Come And Stop Me, this summer.