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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1803734-What-Does-One-Death-Matter
by Harry
Rated: ASR · Poetry · Death · #1803734
A free-verse poem examining whether one death in a large population matters.
A young boy playing
in his backyard
finds a dead sparrow.
His father says,
“Since there are so many
sparrows flying around,
what does it matter?”

Driving to the store,
a teenager sees a dog
run over and killed
crossing the street.
She thinks, ‘So many
dogs are euthanized
by the local pound yearly,
what does this one
dog’s death matter?’

A tourist in Africa
watches a cheetah
chase and bring down
a Thomson’s gazelle.
His guide says,
“These gazelles are
the most plentiful
in all of Africa.
What does one’s
dying matter?”

The couch potato sees
a late-night solicitation
on TV for donations
to save a South American
child from dying
from slow starvation.
She says to her husband,
“The world is already
overpopulated. What does
a few more poverty-stricken
children dying really matter?”

With tears running down
his cheeks, the young boy
gently picks up the dead,
limp sparrow
in his backyard
and replies to his father,
“It mattered a whole lot
to this poor sparrow.”

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