Thursday, January 22, 2009

neighbors on Mcgregor

There are children everywhere, but the ones I pay the most attention to live in a house behind mine. They appear like ghosts over the fence, shouting words that I struggle to understand. Their eyes are small black pebbles, shining like fire in the sunshine.

My daughter hears their voices and runs outside but by that time they are gone... vanishing like raindrops disappear into the earth.

Nothing until nighttime, when I sit out on the back stoop, reading a book; my fingers cold enough that I can barely turn the pages. On nights like this I hear doors slamming and their mother yelling and I try not to listen.

Oftentimes in the morning a White man visits and pushes the children on a tire swing in their backyard. They laugh and then the White man vanishes as quickly as everything else does.

Then, again the children wander like ghosts and I turn my head toward them, sometimes walking to the fence to peek over it, witnessing their little world. This muddy playground strewn, like mine, with pieces of plywood and broken toys.

This is it, I speak to them. But not all of it. Not forever.

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