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43 eighty yards Saturday morning, and a couple of black kids are ambling down Lee Road, past shoppers coming out of Zagara’s, and several old men going into Seitz Hardware, and a gaudy clutch of teenaged girls preening in front of Phoenix Café, when one of the kids, the taller one, sleekly smooth, maybe seventeen, smacks his friend on the butt, and the two of them break into a foot race, an eighty-yard sprint to the end of the block, the taller one lagging behind by a few yards, dogging it, then turning it on, suddenly two, five, ten yards ahead, and then impossibly still accelerating, everybody on the sidewalk— the shoppers, the old men, the gaudy girls— gawking in disbelief, and I realize I never knew a human being could move so fast, burning the air, leaving the rest of us breathless and amazed under the June sun, as he taps the brakes, laughing and clapping his hands in pleasure at his own gift, this kid I’ll learn later is a track phenom at Heights High, state champ, a pulse of pure velocity, rising above us in a flash of casual, impulsive genius, then easing up, shutting it down, wing-footed Hermes rejoining the sidewalk strollers on a lazy day, walking with his friend past the KFC, past Huxley Dry Cleaners, Washington Transmission, Fosbury Life, Home, and Auto. ...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780822979623
Related ISBN
9780822962687
MARC Record
OCLC
870684332
Pages
72
Launched on MUSE
2014-02-18
Language
English
Open Access
No
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