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  • He was dropped off by a minivan on the corner around dusk on that beautiful warm Brazilian night. His twisted and broken body was propped up against a street light post and an empty coffee can was placed in front of him.
    That night's pedestrian traffic hurriedly passed him by. Hundreds of people strolled to and from the many shops, restaurants, beach markets and clubs on the street right next to the beach, adroitly avoiding stepping on his misshaped hands. Everyone seemingly oblivious, barely missing a step as they continued on with their evening's excited conversations and plans. Deftly avoiding eye contact for fear of the young man's soul searing, pleading, fanatical, desperate eyes.
    As I came closer his eyes met mine. I thought I heard him say something to me and whomever else might be listening. But it was unintelligible to me as he was likely speaking Portuguese and I only understood English. But then again, that's not entirely true: Later, I think that I may have understood what he was asking all of us who could hear, quite perfectly.
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