Tag Archives: Volunteer

saturdays at 11:30 AM

I drive to a library on a rough block of my city

where I sit in a large, well-lit room with long, rectangular tables

and wait.

there are Saturdays where no one shows up

and I read or play with my phone or talk to my partner

if he’s around

most of the time we get a few kids who walk in with their mothers

requesting help with homework

which I am glad to oblige

since this is Homework Club, afterall

some of these kids are skinny, some are talkative, some want to be there, some don’t, some are quiet, some are overweight, some are serious, some are funny

some of their mothers drop them off and return later

some sit around and wait

some mothers talk to me

some bring me small gifts once in a while

One mom tells me she dropped out after eight grade

so she can’t help her son with his fifth grade math.

her son who is sitting across from us quietly reading an article about matter and its three states

another tells me she has been in America for a decade

and is embarrassed she hasn’t learned more English.

 

Only once I had a father drop off his two girls.

total jokesters who asked me a million questions every chance they could

in order to get out of doing their homework

one of the girls was named after a pop star.

Two hours later their Dad returned

while he waited for his daughters to pack away their notebooks and pencils

i studied him like he was one of the word problems his daughter just struggled with ten minutes prior

he was about my size

brown hair that roller coastered atop his head

in an endless succession of loops

yellow and black t-shirt

blue jeans

green eyes and thick tufts of hair

above his knuckles

just below where his fingers bent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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