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Patches on our overalls, Holes in our shoes

Story ID:6083
Written by:Monte Leon Manka (bio, contact, other stories)
Organization:retired
Story type:Poem
Location:Hemet CA USA
Year:1930
Person:Soleless Chelsea Kansas Kid
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Patches on our Overalls, Holes in our Shoes

Patches on our overalls
Holes in our shoes
The rough wear that we gave them
To our folks was bad news.

My brother and I kept Mom busy
On that Old Singer Sewing Machine
Mending holes in the knees of our overalls
And trying to keep them clean.

She could make that machine hum
Pumping that treadle near the floor
While sewing on the patches Mom made them
Almost as good as before

We stumbled and fell on our knees
On that road of gravel
The bloody scratches healed
But the cloth that we did unravel

Did not heal
On it’s own
Until Mom took over
And on them patches were sown.

My Brother and I did not know
Those times were really bad
Money was not discussed
In front of us, by my Mom or Dad.

When the soles of our shoes
Wore out or came unsewed
We thought it was funny
To walk flip flopping down the road

We had to wear them until Saturday
We were told
Then for a few dozen eggs
We would have our shoes half-soled.

We never ate at a Café
Our folks purchased only the necessities
Coffee, Tea, Sugar, yeast
Comprised our groceries.

We butchered our meat
Had flour made out of our wheat
Canned fruit and vegetables
To make our diet complete.

I did not know until later
That the families in city
Had to line up for potatoes
Things for them not so pretty.

I did not love or hate the farm
But when I reminisce
I can see we were lucky
Those “Times” I don’t miss.

Monte L. Manka 06-15-2010