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the empty

The fat girl as they call her, came to school with a hypodermic needle in her backpack. It may have been to defend herself, it may have been to instigate something. She comes from a broken home and this is her second or third school. E steers clear of her, and the bullies she tangles with. It was never understood  - how things began, who threw the first insult, the first punch, the first grabbed book but the end is a chronic cycle of violence. At one point, the girl's mother got the police involved and this was seen as offensive, a step too far. The police did not resolve anything so it was all just a lot of saber rattling. That is the most common sound here. The empty threat.

Last week, there was a sobrani, sort of a cross between a parent-teacher conference and a school meeting. I was busy, so E went by herself and took notes. Five minutes in she messaged me, that I was wise not to be there. Nothing about this girl was going to be resolved.
"Boys will be boys" was all …

tonight



She is not here. Just her toys frozen in mid-play. Dolls asleep in makeshift beds. Lego worlds hibernating, waiting for E to return. I have her six days a week these days, a huge spread of time. We make music together, learn the English alphabet, enjoy a galaxy of overlapped moments. I answer a thousand questions a day now - like what the soul is, what air looks like, where babies come from.

On the one day she is not here, the silence is deep.

Five minutes away and I miss her already, the snow still wet on my coat from bringing her downstairs. I find a half-eaten chocolate on my chair. She left it for me.

Comments

Sweet Baby Voice..
Love.
Ella said…
Your lovely daughter has a beautiful voice. You are doing a great job raising her. Take it from a mother who has raised 3 outstanding children. My heart goes out to you.
Omgrrrl said…
So, obviously you were able to answer the question about what a Soul Is.
Rabbit blogger said…
the explanation of what and where the soul is was much easier than where babies come from. besides, E says babies come from tiny stars before they are inside mothers and it was hard to revise that.

we go to solfeggio classes at a very serious music school two times a week. she struggles there for a number of reasons. her mind works differently than this rote memorization stuff (big surprise). ironic she can still sing her little heart out.

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