Kinship

The cities in the Western World
have cancerous slums
that consume millions,
but are far removed
from wealthy neighborhoods,
business districts,
shopping centers,
entertainment areas,
creating an illusion
that poverty doesn’t exist.

The cities in the Eastern world
have pandemic slums
that consume tens of millions,
and spill their denizens,
poor, ragged, hungry, diseased
into wealthy neighborhoods
business districts,
shopping centers,
entertainment areas
shattering the illusion
that poverty doesn’t exist.

Gary Beck has spent most of his adult life as a theater director and worked as an art dealer when he couldn't earn a living in the theater. He has also been a tennis pro, a ditch digger and a salvage diver. His original plays and translations of Moliere, Aristophanes and Sophocles have been produced Off Broadway. His poetry, fiction and essays have appeared in hundreds of literary magazines and his published books include 39 poetry collections, 14 novels, 4 short story collections, 1 collection of essays and 7 books of plays. Gary lives in New York City. Read other articles by Gary.