Soroptimist International of Idyllwild is a women’s service organization that maintains a visible presence in Idyllwild through numerous community activities and scholarships to local girls and women.

One of this year’s events was a Celebration of Women and the Arts, held to raise funds for Soroptimist International’s current global mission of ending human trafficking, a form of modern day slavery in which hundreds of thousands of individuals, mostly women and girls, are held for forced labor or sex. The event included a silent auction of art works by local women artists, musical entertainment by local women, and a PowerPoint slide show illustrating the tragedy of human trafficking.

One woman who attended the event was so moved by the slide show that she wrote the following poem and gave the Soroptimists permission to submit it to the Town Crier:

A Poem by Ana
I was a person
I had a name
I was a girl
I had a room
Pink and white
Filled with dreams
Now I live in a cage
I am bought and sold
They are sucking my life away

I was a person
I had a name
I was a woman
I worked in an office
I had friends
I liked to dance
Now I am working
In the dark
My fingers bleed
They are sucking my life away

I am a person
I had a name
I was a boy
I ate Pop-Tarts
I played games
I went to school
Now I live in another country
I shoot and I fight
They are sucking my life away

We are people
We had names
We wait for rescue
Like you wait for rain
Save us
Save us
The light gets dimmer every day
They are sucking our lives away

Marcia Krull