Walking in the streets today, something weird happened
Two weird things happened
A little girl, two little girls
Walked up to me as I hurried away
They each held on to one of my hands
And prayed that I give them a coin
I looked around, and saw
The mother’s menacing look
Like a pimp with a camera in the hotel room
Daring me to hurt their little children.
So I hurried away.
One let go, but the other little girl
The other little girl did not
She was not so little
Maybe seven, eight years old
She held on and walked at my pace
Half jogged even, as much as her little strides could.
I ignored her, or tried to, and walked even faster.
Twenty metres, she still did not let go.
Thirty metres, fourty, fifty…
I knew that at some point she would have to let go….
I was looking ahead, at something else…
On the road a few metres away, a young boy sat on the back of his mother’s wheelchair
A not so young boy
He sat there, his legs swinging away as his crippled mother
Manouvered her way through the midday traffic.
Unfair, I thought..
Why would he burden his mother even further than she was.
How unfair could a child be, I thought
So unfair as to not see his mother’s plight
Just add weight to he already burdened life
Just sitting at the back, on the big box
Maybe she was a hawker, and the box bore her wares
So, it was even heavy without the little boy.
But then I saw something beautiful,
A balance of nature between mother and son..
When the road started uphill
The not so young boy disembarked
And pushed his mother’s wheelchair,
Helping her negotiate the traffic…
Back to the little girl who would not let go
I ignored her because she was clean
And I knew one of the women looking at me was the mother
I ignored her because
She should have been in school
Because she has a future ahead of her, whether bright or not
I walked away because I saw in her eyes (when I did steal a glance)
A desperation for something more…
Then she did something I did not expect.
When she saw that it was all futile
She stopped, causing me to slow down because she still held my hand
She pinched me really hard.