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Shonté Daniels

BPR 48 | 2021

Though I did not know it then, my mother and I walked to the courthouse
for my father’s trial. It was ’97, the final days of summer nearing.

The sun bore down on us like spotlights, like small children
sitting on hot shoulders. What I remember most is sitting. The seats,

wooden pews in a church, in a room with no instruments, no pastor,
no God brave enough to speak. Then my mother stood. Yes, your honor. Yes,

your honor. And then we left, my mother and I, out the door where the summer’s
heat waited to hold us by the neck, knowing we could not shake it loose.