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poetry by j matthew waters

portrait of a thirty-year-old orphan


for thirty years he found his way
from one place to the next
accepted by contemporaries
and admired for his insistence
on making the world a better place

orphaned at the age of three
he left his birthplace Latrobe
with a motherless family of five
his adoptive father
a tanner turned farmer
staking a claim in eastern Iowa

though a member of no church
his views on nature reflected
the good there is in man
all the while exercising charity
and condemning none

wherever he worked
innovation soon followed
his adventurous spirit a godsend
to each community he served

though illness plagued him
wherever he traveled
he never murmured nor complained
boldly facing the inevitable
crossing the dark waters
with a firm reliance
on mercy and love and destiny




december two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserve

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2 thoughts on “portrait of a thirty-year-old orphan

  1. I was fascinated right from the title, the notion that you could still feel an orphan at 31. A great read 🙂

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