Once

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Ever had a chance to make a difference?

Once, there was a girl who lived in my neighborhood

She was a pale and skinny girl, not much to look at

Her mother died when she was an infant, and her father fell in love with booze

She would go to high school in clothes that were well worn at best

She had no friends, and was taunted and abused by the relentless bullies

But -- no one stood up for her, no, not even a teacher

No one would lend a listening ear, or a helping hand

No, not one; not even I

What was even sadder was when she died, killed by her own flesh and blood in a drunken rage, not a single soul appeared at her burial

No one was there to remember her

I am left to wonder if she had been given even the slightest of chances, would this have saved her?

I'm not sure, but I do know that I had an opportunity to make a difference once... and failed.

(first published with Piker Press September 15th, 2008)
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