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In the first four lines of "Beg a Rose," by Moira Lovell, a youngster described only as a "pale voice," speaks to a woman as she is leaving her car to tell her that he is hungry. (We find out later that it is a boy.) However, instead of helping the child, she puts money in the parking-meter:
I stuffed ten cents into the gob [mouth]
Of the parking-meter.
The starving boy is "thrown into relief" as he stands there so obviously in need, while the woman feeds not the child, but the meter. The contrast is striking as the parking-meter is personified: "Its stomach hummed" and we see the woman's selfish dismissal of the neediness of another human being—the boy's stomach also makes noise, however it growls, and perhaps even pains him. By the end of the first stanza, there is no indication that the child will be fed.
the lady ignored the boy
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