A Change in Time



122nd Street and Third Avenue, NY, NY

Neighborhood: East Harlem

Finally after eight years I can go back to where it used to be fun for me and other children to hang out at Wagner Project’s pool. It still looks the same but really doesn’t feel the same. The children are still splashing in the water, the babies are still in the baby pool with their parents, but it has changed a whole lot for me. The kids are as happy as a smiley face, grass is green like a lime, the lockers still stink like the project stairways, and the benches are as hot as the sun is beaming down to get a tan.

The reason for me returning eight years later is because when I was eight years old something terrible happened to me. I went to Wagner pool all the time, but just this one day my mother didn’t want me in the pool for some reason. So I went anyway and stood outside the pool, on the other side of the gate talking to my cousin. I guess it’s true what they say, mothers do always knows best. Then this guy walked up to this young lady who was standing next to me and started to slice her face with a razor and I was in so much shock that I couldn’t help her, all I could do was watch.

After he cut her he ran around the corner of the pool, and around the corner there is a highway that goes to Queens. He got into a yellow taxi and took off but while running he was looking dead in my face as if he was trying to remember what I look like. I tried to help her and I took her into the nurse inside the pool where they called the cops. It was so sad; there was blood everywhere, even on my clothes. I had blood on my hands and when I looked at her face, he cut her so deep that the skin and meat was hanging off her face as if it was a straight out of a movie. The cops asked me questions. I only told them that I saw her crying and screaming. I didn’t tell them that I saw the guy and him attacking her. I came to find out it was her stepfather and he cut her because they had an argument and she left the house. After that the whole summer I stayed inside the house because I thought he was coming back to get me until I realized it was nothing to worry about anymore eight years later. And now I’m going to Wagner pool with no problems or flashbacks reminding me of that afternoon.


This essay was written as a part of a HREF=”http://www.Mapsites.net” TARGET=”_new”>Mapsites.net workshop.

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