What's Not Discussed
(Huntsville, Al, USA)
When Kelly moved to Alabama in 1963, she felt a great deal of sadness. Her entire childhood had been informed by white winters, ice skating on frozen ponds, colorful falls and mild summers by the lake.
She thought about Alabama, and felt tiny blonde hairs rise on her body. Would it be swampy? Just how hot would it be?
Her cousin Tommy once told her that he regularly took eggs from the refrigerator during his summer break, and broke them on the sidewalk, where they would actually fry! How could anyone live in a place like that.
Kelly pulled her dolly, Sally, to her chest. What would happen to all these memories? Would people forget? They were all so important!
Kelly's concerns were fairly accurate, but she strangely grew to like Alabama. The children were kind, and smiled a lot. Some of them spoke with a drawling accent, but after a few weeks she hardly noticed it. One girl, Porsha, invited her to play at recess one day.
While they built sand castles, Kelly admired Porsha's dark skin and exotic wirey hair. She had never seen anyone so beautiful.
After a few months, Kelly became pretty popular. One day over the winter break (there was actually snow here after all!), a few neighborhood boys invited her to play in the creek.
Kelly skipped along with them into the woods, where they said they had something special to show her.
"The coast is clear, boys," one of them said.
Their smiles turned cold, as they circled her. Kelly's heart began to race.
"Hahaha," another boy chortled, "What did you expect?"
"Wh-" Kelly stammered back and tripped on a rock.
"Let's see if this nigger-lover wears underwear!"
The boys proceeded to rip her dress apart, chanting "nigger lover, nigger lover, nigger lover."