“You gotta keep your full guard up all the time,” he says. “Like this.”
He’s demonstrating what he means and I peek my head out the screen door to find out about this full guard business.
He’s smiling and my boy is smiling and the rest of my people are sitting around the deck on benches, hanging on every one of Kevon’s words.
I pull up a bench, too.
“You don’t ever put your head down because then you could get upper cut,” he adds to the full guard talk. “And you always watch your opponent’s eyes, their hands, their feet. You just never know what could happen.”
I watch the kids and they’re wide-eyed and all grins and I can’t help but grin, too. Kevon’s all arms and legs and braces and I don’t think for a minute he’s ever been in a fight.
But he’s learning us a little something on our deck and so we keep picking his 13 year old brain.
How do you survive living in this neighborhood if you don’t join a gang?
What do you want to be when you grow up?
Have you ever been beat up?
What is the one thing you should never say to someone walking down our street?
What do you like to eat?
Do you have a girlfriend?
Can you dunk a basketball?
Why do you want to go to LSU?
I pour Kool-aid and serve popsicles and we listen as this boy lets us into his world.
We all sit amazed at the number of words he can weave in a minute.
And I sit amazed at the realization that his world is our world, too.
Kevon lives just one street over.
As always, I’m over at Lisa-Jo’s, writing for her Five Minute Friday. Five minutes, pure writing with no edits, and then hit the publish key! Today’s prompt is Listen. And as always, I have written in real time. Kevon is a boy we baptized last October and he’s being discipled by a man in our church. We spent the day with Kevon yesterday and he’ll be back for more Kool-aid today. I’m sure of it.