"A Carnation & A Number"

She should be swinging at the park and jumping in the leaves
Instead tears are streaming down her face as she hugs her knees
She should be in a classroom saying ABCs and counting 123s
Instead she’s pleading for her life, saying, “Let me go home please”
Streaks of blue and red cascade the streets this solemn night
Cops comb every inch of town the little girl nowhere in sight
She should be having sweet dreams while sleeping in her own bed
Instead she’s in a cold basement and not once has she been fed
She should be held tight by her mom and protected by her dad
Instead she’s been kidnapped by a man for something very bad
Adjusting to the darkness which now completely engulfs her
There’s a quiet noise to her left and right a whimper and a whisper
Seven pairs of eyes meet hers as the shadow unfurls
Including her the bad man has taken 8 innocent little girls
She should be playing with her friends in the house in the backyard tree
Instead she’s covered in dust and grime and her hair is knotted and messy
The descent of boots loud on the stairs and creak of the basement door
The bad man and his friends send fear and chill to her very core
Soon their wrists and ankles have been chained and they’re forced into a line
This young girl comforts the youngest of the 8 saying, “We’re gonna be fine”
She should be sitting and praying at church in the front most pew
Instead she’s lost and in big trouble of which she has no clue
Each girl is undressed and redressed by scary and strange men
A quick prayer quietly escapes her lips and then she says amen
Now all 8 of them are clean and fit for their presentation
And behind ear girl’s ear is placed a fresh carnation
Now each girl has a number and are addressed as such
While the big men with fat wallets and sick minds are longing for a touch
These rich men will pay thousands for innocent little girls so fair
Simply tiny trophies to be used and abused then tossed aside without care
The last little girl who’s been reduced to a number, 8,
Forced to climb up the platform steps and wait
As the bidding begins she sets her jaw and holds her head high
Determined not to give up and have a chance to live her life
A shout echoes throughout the room saying, “Sold for ¼ of a $ million”
Tension now smothers her and despite the heat, her heart is stilling
Her jaw drops open, she can’t breathe and slumps to the ground
The last glimmer of hope died when she knew she’d never be found
She should be turning 10 in August with a birthday that was gonna be swell
Instead she’s lying underground buried before last year’s snow fell
They found her body in a muddy field covered in a ghostly white sheet
Pale as porcelain with broken feet
Someone else’s skin beneath her nails
Branded with bruises and poorly healed scars, her lifeless form seemed frail
Dressed in a weathered red slip tattered and torn
Tis such a shame to lose such innocence with skin no longer warm
The detective who discovered her knew she’d been kidnapped by a ring
Now for the lost innocence of this girl only the angels sing

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This poem is about sex-trafficking of a young girl. The inspiration came from watching an episode of the tv show, "Criminal Minds". I am also a person with many deep convictions and have a lot to say about a lot of big issues. I felt as though this issue is so often somewhat of a mystery and not something we can really grasp. Like trying to capture air in a net. I feel if we address problems like these head-on with all the resources at our disposal then we stand a chance of stopping these innocent children from a horrible fate/life. I usually try to incorporate an element of hope in my poems but I felt doing so in this poem would make it seem less serious and wouldn't do justice to so many who have suffered. I didn't want this poem to be just another poem. I wanted to make people feel something and to stir a fire inside them to act. I hope it works. This is probably the most serious, and detailed poem I have ever written. I put a lot of thought, heart and effort into it.