The new lament, the ‘why can’t two live on one income anymore.’


Another Threshold

I can’t afford this life I lead
as though there was another choice
And all the things that seemed so simple,
so reachable,
so logical,
so eminently fair
just a while ago,
are creeping out of reach

It’s the grasp, it must be the grasp
There’s nothing wrong with the reach,
except for being out of
These days Boeing and McDonnell Douglas
are setting my pace
and their pace is up,
while my reach is out
and maybe yours as well

I guess it’s just another threshold
The point at which agreeable pain
turns disagreeable
and edges toward
impossible
or intolerable,
or some such old-fashioned word

But these are new-fashioned times
with the new downsizing
and the new math
where two and two equals one
as in earning power,
as in the ability
to raise a family
or even catch a breath

Another threshold
as the Dow breaks through 5,000
More millionaires than ever
as two of us lean into the harness,
hoping to be among them
before we break
or break each other
and fight back quiet tears

Poetry Collection: Broken Pieces
This poem is included in
Jim Freeman’s
poetry collection
BROKEN PIECES
available here in print
or as an e-Book
in your favorite formats.