11th and Osage

April 26, 2008

The air was mixed with the scent smoke and meat gristle as I stood there waiting. Three little Mexican boys were walking hand in hand. Their eyes were clear, untarnished by the darkness of the surroundings they occupied. Ahead of them was a collection of youth straddling their bicycles. Tar billowed from their mouths and malice from their hearts. The three little Mexican boys stopped dead in their tracks at the site of the group. A collision of my privilege and their hardship was crashing right before my eyes. They were old enough to know that an intersection through the gang would bring pain and young enough to know there was nothing they could do about it. Their resolution was to remain bound together and sway back and forth. Their warm bodies pressed together as they moved to the rhythm of fear.


A short time later, at the intersection of 11th and Osage, the nicotine from the gang’s cigarettes had all been expelled. They grew bored and rode off on their Walmart BMX bikes. It was one more safe walk home for the three Mexican boys.



  1. I do enjoy it when you describe a moment’s scenery for me. Gracias.

  2. why thank you, shelley!

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