A Poem by Liam Thomas, Design Science Middle College High School

Category: Listening Sessions, Personal Stories, Poverty News & Policy Updates, The Safety Net

February 07th, 2022

Liam Thomas is a 9th grader at Design Science Middle College High School in Fresno. He also takes classes at Fresno City College.  He is one of 4 students at Compton College, Laney College, and Fresno City College who won a prize in EPIC’s inaugural Student Ideas Contest. 


Haggardly, intricately covered in the woes of life

Seeking creature comforts of safety, shelter and food

Dodging the hierarchical order of society’s strife

It’s hard to get on the right path, in the right mood

When you have holes in your sock

When your tummy aches

When every door has a lock

When all life wants to do is take

It’s hard to find the fighter in you

It’s hard to keep your cool

It’s hard to know what to do

Pull yourself up by the bootstraps they say

Find the strength to overcome

Don’t let your life fall into a state of array

Don’t let it make you numb

But it’s hard to find the fighter in you, to keep your cool, to know what to do

Poverty is no joke, it’s easy to lose hope, to soak in your woes and mope

Clothes tattered

Head downcast

Future shattered

How long will this last?

Somewhere, somehow, from deep within, even though this is how it’s always been

I need to find the strength to overcome, to not be numb

To not lose hope, to not soak in my woes and mope

To find the fighter in me, to defeat poverty