My Very Own Crew


My family’s my all

Under one roof

That could cave in soon


Still, no time to ponder

Time exhausted its quotas

Naught left but laughter


Laughter’s our chief cover

Our survival kit

Strength in numbers


Mom’s third in line

Now abandoned for dad’s fifth

All said, now twenty-six


Not to mention Hannibal

Fred, Maria, Elena, Danilo

Joshua, Norma, Marco et al


All first cousins

Not counting their own

Our distant ones


They’d come all merry mingling

With the crowd of jolly bodies

Chuckling, no time for gloom


Misery loving company?

Ain’t the reverse true?

Still, laughter aplenty


Imbibing the local brew

The only one we afford

To boost the joy in the splurge


Jeff, Cedric’s distant uncle

Became more distant

After being voted to the council


Touting his bulge between his legs

Nicknamed him “ostrich eggs”

Diagnosed with hydrocele


From some blood worm

Ballooning his scrotum

His frippery swiftly unhinged


Later incarcerated

For robbing public lands

Making his pockets inflated


Bro Fred, with no front teeth

From his taste for sweets

His liver gave way to the booze


Burying him was the last straw

Mitch his younger sib

Took over his dray


Vending bananas in the hood

Unsold leftovers made our do

Little Joe took to picking pockets


Our dog absconded

Eloping with a bitch

He’d go bananas at the sight of Mitch


Mom often said, keep laughing

No deliverance in sight

No poetry nor whining


Could save you gang

Making laughter more vital

Little hope for change


Happily ever after

Ain’t no fairy tale exclusive

But for folks like us, Mom was right


© Alwi Shatry, All Rights Reserved

  • Author: Seek (Offline Offline)
  • Published: October 16th, 2017 01:22
  • Comment from author about the poem: Poverty cannot be celebrated. But being short on choices and means, life must go on.
  • Category: Family
  • Views: 62
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Comments +


  • FredPeyer

    Great, great poem, Alwi!
    Family is everything, no matter how crazy, immoral, or illegal! 🙂
    I really like your poem, no matter what happens, as long as we can laugh about it, it will eventually be good!

    • Seek

      I am flattered and humbled by your very kind remarks Fred. But you are so right about family being the center of our existence no matter how outsiders see it. And family is where our defense mechanisms in fighting adversity are created --- and sustained. The fact that I had to live some of what\'s described here (aside from the drama) and from what I have witnessed in the Philippines and other developing countries, the ability to laugh at situations can be beyond belief; to me that is a true mark of human resilience. I read your review with a huge sigh of relief. Had no idea how this would be received. So far so good though. Again, thanks.

    • WL Schuett

      Terrific Seek , I have not known poverty first hand , have had some tough times like everyone . But this shines a light on your family's fortitude laughing through the hard times . Glad you wrote about it .

      • Seek

        Thank you WLS. The world of the less fortunate is so entirely different from the more affluent societies where so much more is taken for granted. Yet the humanity and resilience in constantly inventing new coping strategies would seem limitless where poverty dominates. And yes, laughter is scarcely in short supply.

      • Neville

        an amazing snapshot we have here families eh' who would have em....

        I don't envy Jeff either ouch... N

        • Seek

          Thanks. Me neither!

          • Neville

            poor bloke....

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