I ran buck wild for a porky child, sometimes even faster than the bullies chasing me. Bare-skin feet scrambling across playgrounds, through alleyways, through drugstore parking lots. They caught me once, I can still feel their blows. They caught me twice, I can show you the crooked scar. There were love handles on my side and dirt in my neckline, but there was not a third time. Adrenaline is the speed of children.
Running through the woods I was almost home. But I was out of breath in the Texas sun, heavy shoulders rising and falling under my sweatstained shirt. The pines were too skinny to hide behind. Catcalls and fistfalls were approaching fast. Then a ditch beside the channel whispered my name. There was a cargo barrel at its bottom and I slid inside, a rusty comfort beside the tide. In my mind it was a spaceship…
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