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Poem in response to Clean Water and Sanitation
June 2018

Five Miles to Water

By Caroline Sun
CC Image Courtesy of Alonso Valenzuela

The jar is strong with walls of hardened clay,

Its heat-glazed outside patterned black and gray.

Hand after hand has gripped its rounded rim,

And countless water drops have passed its brim.

She holds it up above her covered head;

There’s nothing but the river path ahead.

Eight hours is the time she takes each day;

There is no time for these kids to play.

Our people have been cursed, her mother wails.

That water gives us health, it grants us life;

Instead it brings us pain, and endless kills.

She struggles every day to end their strife,

As sudden sickness makes her brothers ill.

That water kills as fast as any knife.

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