They Give Awards for That

They Give Awards for That

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An ESME Poetry Showcase Award submission

They give awards for that

They’re giving out prizes to single moms.

Finally some appreciation.

I wrote my application

and drew in my own boxes

because there wasn’t one

for sleeping in the corridor so your children

can each have a room.

Or for living opposite the seedy bar

and running the gauntlet outside your front door.

There was one for taking care of their health

and I added podiatrist, optician, cardiologist, and dermatologist

to “general.”

I wrote four years, eight months,

and zero

in “contact with father”

and “alimony.”

I scored 10 for mental anxiety

and 10 for chronic despair.

Obama and Clinton wrote references,

and praised their own moms in turn.

I’m in with a chance to win.

When they photograph me with my medal

like a true Olympian,

I’m going to bite on it.

With any luck it won’t crack.

Lee Nash lives in France and freelances as an editor and proofreader. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in print and online journals in the UK, the US, and France, including Ambit; Angle; Ink, Sweat and Tears; Mezzo Cammin; Orbis; Poetry Salzburg Review; Sentinel Literary Quarterly; the French Literary Review; the Interpreter’s House; the Lake; and the World Haiku Review. You can find a selection of her poems on her website,

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