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Titulo

Boy


by Malika Maya

The car broke down on Thursday; the car won't be picked up until Tuesday; the buses don't go into our neighborhood; wear your uniform to school; make sure you wash it in hot water the night before, each night; you only have one and you can't have stains on it; you'll look messy; you can't look messy; blot out the stains with some cold water; dab a little bleach on them if you have to; you can't look messy; don't get mad at your teachers; don't give them a reason to have a bad word to say about you; but I always get good grades in my classes, I think they like me, mama; thinking is not enough; you have to know; never give them a reason to have a bad word to say about you; never take any pictures; never take any pictures with a peace sign, with a thumbs up, with your head down, with a frown on your face; never take any pictures; wear your brother's old Velcro shoes; don't wear the ones with the laces in case you need to run; this is how you tie your shoes tight enough so they don't loosen when you run; don't look at police officers for too long; don't make eye contact; don't ask for help; the buses don't run into our neighborhood; keep the I'm finnas and I'm bouttas that bounce around the streets out your mouth; you can't look messy; you can't look messy to them; don't put candy in your uniform pockets, don't put a can in your uniform pocket, don't put anything in your uniform pockets; on you it looks too much like a gun to them; don't walk in the street; it'll give them a reason to stop you; don't slouch when you walk; don't drag your feet; it'll give them a reason to stop you; don't walk too slow; it'll give them a reason to stop you; don't listen to your music while you're walking so you can hear the sirens when they stop you; don't put you hands near your pockets when they stop you; don't put your hands near your pockets when they stop you; don't raise your voice when they stop you; be angry when they stop you; don't look angry when they stop you; don't look angry when they stop you; don't when they stop you; but what happens after all that, mama?; please make it home after they stop you.

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