Rolling My Own

People pity me
because they see it as
A visible mark
Of addiction in poverty,
Which I suppose it is.
They smile condescendingly
And offer me a “real” cigarette,
As if that which I form myself
Is somehow less real
Than what is bought
Pre-fab,
Machine-made
By corporate America
Or a colony thereof.
I accept their manufactured cigarettes
Because tobacco is tobacco,
Nicotine is nicotine,
A smoke is a smoke is a smoke,
And I know it makes them feel benevolent
To enable less fortunate addicts,
And I do appreciate it,
But I smile to myself
Because I know a secret they don’t:
Hand-rolled cigarettes taste better.

Danilee Eichhorn

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