An old Lady (but I still got it!)

i refer to myself as the fire woman
when i ask for favors
because i dont like to identify myself
as a victim

but i needed just a couple of things
a roll of toilet paper, five minutes to sleep
my legs are still full of stumbles
my eyelids are drooping down to my neck
and i often forget to eat

why havent i slept? strict time limits
i had to find a home before i freezed out on christmas
my crisis team included a pro bono lawyer
a dear friend’s sister’s on again off again boyfriend
a college professor turned chair who was “appalled”
by my school’s lack of housing, the mayor and her assistants
two realtors, one from my aunt’s church, one from facebook
and three laborers who’ll refuse to let me pay them
but ill try hard to anyways because they are my students
one of which, after class, waited until everyone else left
gave me a hug and said “I don’t know about fires
but i know about homelessness”

my solution for emergency housing
left me thirty years old and the new girl on campus
and you know, the best part about all this has been
the young college boys’ reactions
when they see me walking down the street
with bags that are too heavy. they have stars in their eyes
when they run to help me-me! and im an old lady!

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