Just Like That

by Hakim

I once had an aunt, she was loved by seven children who all grew up together
One was her daughter, the rest nieces and nephews
I know I wasn't her favorite 
But she was mine 
She said goodbye one night to me, called me by my name. 
"Good night, Ayodele."
She walked down the angular hallway that led to a doorway 
that connected our apartment to her elder sister's home in Mt. Vernon. 
I watched as she was covered by the darkness of the settling evening. 
And she was gone.
Just like that
There was a pop.
There was water. 
She was surprisingly calm. I wasn't.
There was a cab.
It never came.
There was a neighbor we'd never spoken to.
He had a car.
He took us there. Almost 14 years later, I still don't know his name.
There was a room. 
A doctor.
"Stop Pushing!"
A scream
A Life.
My Daughter.
I'm now a father.
Just like that. 
A Tribe Called Quest had a concert one summer at the Apollo Theater in Harlem. 
I was young. So young...
Space Jam Jordan's, we called them the "Bugs Bunny's".
She had twist, a white blouse, denim jeans filled with curves.
We watched. We danced. We Applauded. 
I took her home to Brooklyn. Hawthorne Avenue. It was 3:00AM.
She invited me up. Her room was small, right next to the front door. 
A push, a poke, a kiss, a grope. 
I was a man.
Just like that. 
I had a cousin; we were close. 
We fought like brothers, we hung out like friends. 
He was stylish, brash and bold. 
A call from my mother led me to his hospital room 
My brother met me there, so did my best friend, he was family too.
My cousin laid on a bed in the center of the room 
He was a shell of the man I knew.
We three stood around him. We joked, and watched something on the small TV
that hung in the corner of the room with no windows.
We three were saying goodbye.
He knew it. 
He waited for his mom.  
The monitor's beep, in rushed a nurse.
We were asked to leave. 
There was a song playing over the hospital hallway speakers, one we all liked. 
"...The jury's out and your eyes search the room for one friendly face
is all you need to see/If there's one guy/Just one guy/Who'd lay down his life
for you and die/I hate to say it/I hate to say it/It's probably me..."
He let go. 
Just like that.
We die.
We love.
We live.
We dance.
We cry.
We laugh.
We grow.
We think.
We wish.
We dream.
We are of but an instant. 
We leave.
Find happiness.
Be joyous.
Within an instance,
A second
A grain of sand on Infinity's beach
It ends.


Just Like That by Hakim

© Copyright 2010. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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