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18 Robert Coles I Was Brown, They Were Black When the white kids threw corn at Marvin and Rayetta Grey on the school bus in the morning, I sat by the window and asked, "Why should I intervene?" Didn't they tell me, "You're different. You're one of us." I lived on the right side of town, the Grey's lived by the meadow. I went shopping at the supermarkets, they slaughtered pigs for meals. I read books for white boys, they did what they had to. Corn flew wildly in the aisle; Marvin held his sister's hand flinging the grains back. Jim Maxwell Died Last Week It was summer, 1965. We were splashing and carrying on, a group of black boys in the mostly white Bryn Gweled community pool. Jim Maxwell blew his whistle, told us to get out. When my father came home that evening, he called Jim and said, "Don't you ever do that again." But Jim shouted too; I could hear his voice on the line. Years passed, we moved away. In 1989, Bryn Gweled held a reunion. Jim came and sat by my father. They smiled as only old friends do. ...


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