Because Your Choices Were Poor

by Gary Hardaway

Foolish boy, you chose
your parents poorly-
junkie mother and who knows
which irresponsible father.
And this neighborhood,
where you first soiled a diaper
once home from that poorly chosen
downtown county hospital.
And how could you have selected
such a terrible elementary school
and grimy middle school,
and the razor-wired and metal-detected
high school you didn't elect to finish?
With you, it's one bad decision
following another and here you are,
thug from a drug gang,
starting prison, just turned sixteen.