Helpers Song
(For Clarita)

We come from the Land of Smiles & villages of shacks and laughter. From Burmese firelands & the memory of Pol Pot’s slaughter.

We arrive in cities of neon and glass that are hard-edged and very fast. Full of hope, us woman who clean and mop and tidy surrounded by enmity and people who despise us.

We care and nurture for your most precious possessions. 
And daily we feed and hug and keen for our own babies left behind
remembered in tattered photos rarely seen.

We try to smile for you every day. Heads held high even when forced to keep four steps behind. An unpaid packhorse and slave in a supposed free land.

I am strong and vibrant. I have stories to tell. I am wise and beautiful and deserve freedom not a cell.

And still you fail to notice the smudges beneath my eyes. My rail like thinness beneath cheap cotton ties. Your eyes gloss over me, 
I’m simply not there.

I am a woman just like you, my Ma’am. 

But I am a woman who cares.