jim (and brad, too, of course)--
yes, the lines ("fools...who...never even think...a fee / I couldn't pay to go to proper schools / Allows them status, privilege, unfair / Advantage, claims to being more than just / A common person") can be read as meaning that "it never occurs to" the fools that money does, in fact, allow them status, privilege, unfair advantage and claims to being better. but i go back to the previous lines and see that the speaker is describing these folk as people who "only see the money". in my mind, a person who "only sees the money" WOULD be conscious of the fact that his money gives him status, privilege, etc., and he would think that he IS better than the common schmucks without it. anyway, i think this issue highlights my concerns with the whole poem being one run-on sentence.
another problem here... if the poem is to be one long sentence, i think it needs better control over all the subordinate clauses. "never equal partners..." is just kind of hanging there. the fools are people WHO:
never even think
never equal partners
never have to bear, beg or split.
see what i mean? the "never equal partners with working people" needs a verb or something, unless you go back and, for that one clause only, see them as fools "who only think they're...never equal partners...." but then that's a little jarring; it also confuses the issue of whether they are or aren't (or should be) equal, or whether they merely believe that they aren't. *sigh*
i really like the one-sentence approach here, not in the least because it gives such a "layered" texture to the piece. (only the first line here stands on its own; everything else is a clause modifying another part of the poem.) it's definitely worth keeping, with some "tweaking". (can't believe i just used that word, lol.)
i also recognize, jim, that the last line could refer to something other than divorce, such as dividing up discretionary spending. the line definitely carries connotations of divorce, though, whether intended or not, especially following the phrase "beg for trust" (and the word "split"). if division of discretionary money (a problem which, true, the "fools" would not share with the carpet layer) was intended, some other way should be found to convey that meaning, in my opinion. otherwise the "fools" can reply, "what are you talking about? we DO sometimes have to split what is his and what is hers, just like you do, pal, what are you whining about?", turning the poem into little more than a rant by a disgruntled, jealous, self-absorbed carpet guy with a chip on his shoulder, when it could be much, much, more.
i like the "d-e-f-d-e-f" rhymes in the last six lines, but thought that's how the sestet is usually structured, anyway? i defer to your greater wisdom here, james.
[This message has been edited by jenni (edited 01-05-2000).]