Her lungs seek fervently to find a breath of stuffy air,
Her heart looks in desperation for courage to hope,
Her mind searches hopelessly to find the end.
Cycles. Unbreakable circles.
Melded out of the strongest metal,
Tied into the tightest knots.
Then finally, a vote.
But their “Union” disintegrates.
And the cycle makes another round.
Her ears hear “no” two-hundred and forty-three times,
Hear “yes” just seventeen.
Her eyes see a faltering memory of her forlorn family,
The images patched from the years apart, like their clothes.
Her nose smells the sweat, the dedication, the loyalty,
of each fellow worker on her either side.
The factory door remains unlocked,
Melded shut with the strongest metal,
Tied shut with tightest knot.