His Name Wasn’t John: A Poem

Content Warning: This poem addresses child trafficking and child laundering. This poem is based on true events. Reader discretion is advised.

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

His Name Wasn’t John

We play in his backyard
Conquer the big rock
Footholds covered in
Light blue-grey lichen
While he says
Strange things
To a five year old mind
He talks of Africa
He talks of memories:
His parents still alive
(Not the white couple inside)
He says They brought groceries
He says he didn’t always speak English
Before the human trafficking,
[I’m sorry]

Thank you so much for reading this poem. If you found yourself moved, please consider liking, commenting, and/or sharing it with others. Truly, I am grateful for the time you spent reading my work. While you’re here, if this sparked anger in you as it did for me when I realized that this happened to a childhood friend of mine, please check out UNICEF’s page on child trafficking and consider getting involved with Save The Children.

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