He’s Making Bread

 

His name was Tommy Mok

and he’d get his ass

kicked everyday when we

were in elementary school

 

Tommy was half Chinese

and half white and lived

in a house whose paint

was like skin ready to shed

 

His shirts were dirty

and his nose was runny

and his skinny arms

dangled at his sides

covered with scabs

 

They’d follow him

home and call him

names, everybody got

a shove, a push, a lick

a punch…a piece

 

and elementary turned

into Jr. High and Tommy

fought back but still

took more than he gave

 

He got out of high

school and he disappeared

along with everybody

else

 

I am one that didn’t

disappear, sticking around

to see Tommy again

30 years later

 

Working at a small

bakery that he

owns

 

They make bread

out of whole grains

along with a variety

of healthy pastries

and coffee

 

I said nothing

when I saw him come

out of his shop

to have a smoke

 

Tommy Mok

 

30 lbs. Heavier,

thinning hair and

the same dirty

t shirt

 

Takes a drag

of his cigarette

 

Let’s it

sit

 

Then

 

Let’s it

go

 

 

 

(c) 2009 Tony Robles

 

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