11.17.2014 Journal Prompt

Photo by William Klein
Photo by William Klein

November 17, 2014: One time, with my sister…

One Reply to “11.17.2014 Journal Prompt”

  1. Me and Emmy, we was always goofing around back when. Like this one time when we dressed up in prairie clothes and we went into town and started yee-haa-ing and dancing like it was a hoedown, like we even knew what a hoedown was. Emmy kicking her legs in the air and me just waving my arms about silly and tipping my cowboy hat at everyone we passed and saying howdy to ’em all, and fingering the plastic colt pistol in it’s plastic holster.

    And this guy just stopped us and he said we was sorta cute and he wanted to take our picture, if that was alright. He said we was just to keep doing what we was doing, the singing and the dancing, and not to mind him. He took maybe a dozen pictures and I reckon every one of ‘em musta been blurry on account of Emmy kicking so high and the both of us laughing so much and waving all the time.

    The man acted like he was a reporter or something. He asked for our names and where we lived and he wrote everything down in a spiral bound notebook. He said Emmy was pretty and she should be a model or something. She was eleven and he was saying such stuff!

    He bought us both a coke from a stand and he sat with us in the park and he kept smiling and asking us ‘bout school or ‘bout our folks. Emmy was just Emmy and she was talking for the both of us, like she was excited and nervous at the same time, talking so much it was as though I wasn’t even there – that’s what it felt like.

    Then Emmy asked him his name. He said it was Kip and he shook Emmy’s hand like they was just being introduced and he held her hand and he was slow as slugs to let it go. He didn’t shake my hand or even look at me.

    And Kip asked what we was doing all dressed up like we was, and dancing and making such a ruckus everywhere. Emmy just shrugged and said we was only bringing the sunshine down to the street. She was always saying stuff like that and making out she was being original, and Kip made a show of trying to remember it, running the words over and over in his mouth. He said it was a real pretty thing what she’d said. Truth is the words wasn’t even Emmy’s – she’d heard someone say that on the tv once, a film star it was and she was blonde and pretty and you could see she was curvy.

    Then, right out of the blue, Kip asked Emmy if she had a boyfriend. She was eleven for chrissakes and anyways, it was none of his beeswax. And he said she was pretty enough she should have two or three boyfriends, or a whole busload of boyfriends, and the way he looked at Emmy, well I was getting to be a bit uncomfortable. He took her hand again and there was no need for that.

    I finished my coke and I stood up to go and I made a show if it. And I looked at Emmy like she should go too, but Kip was still holding her hand and I think she was enjoying the attention. I didn’t believe his name was Kip and I didn’t like the way he kept touching Emmy’s dress and the way he was looking at her all the time.

    And right out of nowhere there was this lady walking her dog in the park and the dog came right up to us, its tail wagging like we was friends and its head pushing everywhere, and Kip let go Emmy’s hand then and we just walked away.

    Later, when me and Emmy was talking again, she said I was not to tell mom or to tell dad. Swear, she said, swear on the lives of small babies everywhere. I said it was lucky we gave false names and false addresses and we was fools to have sat with Kip. And I said how it was lucky, too, that the dog came around. Emmy laughed like it was all just a game. Men is such fools, she said, and fiddle-dee-dee, and she played the ends of her hair through her fingers like she’d seen flirty women do, and though she was eleven and a whole year older than me, I don’t think she really understood.

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