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Growing up in the end

Growing up, the rich kids lived in big brick houses with a maid’s quarters.

We lived in quant wood framed houses the size of a maid’s quarters.

They grew up with tennis courts and swimming pools in their back yards for fun. We grew up with gardens and rabbit hutches for food.

Their mothers went to the beauty shop. Our moms were the beauticians.

Their fathers took their cars to a mechanic. Our dads were the mechanics.

They parked their cars in multi-bay garages. We parked a used car under a car port or shade tree.

They grew up with saunas. We grew up with bathtubs absent of showers.

They hired people to groom their lawns. We were the groomers.

They took their clothes to the dry cleaners. We took ours to the laundry mat.

They had microwaves and dishwashers. We had electric stoves and wash basins.

Their parents drank bottles of wine and fine champagne. Our parents drank beer and whiskey.

Their family ran for office. Our relatives ran from officers.

They came from blue blood. We came from blue collars.

They played in central heat and air.  We prayed for a cool breeze and a box fan.

They laid down cash for nearly everything. We’d pick up a few things through lay away.

Their grandparents bought cartons of cigarettes. Ours rolled their own.

They owned exotic birds and show dogs. We went quail hunting with bird dogs.

They slept with guards at the gates. We slept with guns under our pillows.

They ate in restaurants. We heated up TV dinners.

Their fathers carried briefcases. Our dads packed lunch boxes.

They went on vacations. We went crawdad fishing.

They slammed doors and stomped their feet when upset. We knocked down doors and kicked in teeth when crossed.

They went to college. We went to the company store.

They shopped at shopping malls for school clothes. We traded hand-me-downs with family and friends.

Their pockets held hundreds. Our pockets had holes.

In the end, they died and left everything behind. We died and didn’t have anything to take.

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