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  • The smell of fresh grass mingles with sweat and dirty socks and I wonder if it's worth sitting up, moving away from the feet that my nephew has pushed toward my face. In the end, I just turn my head toward the grass and sink back into the movie. He'll move soon enough.

    The boy is restless on this hot, still, steamy night. He scratches at insect bites that aren't there and tries to find a comfortable spot among the blueberry cobbler and red plastic cups, shoes and water bottle. He pushes at food with his feet and my brother, his uncle, whispers, "Stop!"

    Everyone has finished eating. Mostly. Not really. Grazing although they aren't hungry at all. They never were. Cilantro and lime, black beans and corn chips. Salted butter on the edge of blueberries. Fresh watermelon, rough and sweet.

    The wool of the blanket and uncovered blades of grass scratch as I shift, trying to find a more comfortable position, one in which I can maybe stay still for a minute or five and see the screen.

    Gunshots ring out in a night that's somehow turned silent. All talk stops but the slaughtered Spanish of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

    The sun set in a swirl of gold and pink in the thick blue sky and then came the cartoon, the sponsors, the movie and settling in.

    The night air, still heavy, hazy, hot, pushes me down, pulls on my eyelids, makes my head heavy, and I rest it a while on the camera beside me as I dream of a happy ending and the boy falls asleep.
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