One Window – A poem by Anne Cartledge

Rushing around making sure to have
All that is needed to make our lives
More secure, warm and safe
Let’s see how many stops need I make.

Stop one- those papers there
Stop two I pick up another form
Hopefully I can fill it and
Leave it there- future trip averted.

Do I have my documents, proof we
Exist, and that is the key word
Breathe, breathe deep, now to pack
Up the babies that must come along.

The past months have been a strain
I alone must try to fix the mess.
Here’s hoping that I can get the ‘pad’
It sure would help us to live not exist.

Well some success and some frustration
Why can’t they be nicer – I am trying
Where to find the cash for another trip
The mission is turning into a battle.

Hush my children, soon there is food
And a chance for you to sleep
Hopefully, I can get a friend to help
I can make more headway on my own.

It sure would make it easy
To build a future some do easily
Again why must we struggle
The messages and put downs ring

In my ears, I fight them daily
Besides the screaming of my kids
I can’t quit, I must go on
Why can’t this be easier?


(c) Anne Cartledge (Please do not reproduce without the Author’s written permission.)

One Window was written for the One window Project by the City of Calgary.  Read at the Provider Feedback Session held April 5,  2017.


Anne Cartledge is the Founder of the “Closing the Seniors’ Gap: AISH to Pension”. She has spoken with many municipal, provincial, and federal departments with regards to this issue. Anne is a passionate advocate of affordable housing, has attended conferences on poverty and the One Window Project, providing feedback of value. Her style of poetry is called freestyle and she has discovered this talent in the last couple of years.

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