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Red Pens


The little Hispanic girl at the stationer's
on Park Avenue South just now
asked me my name, and repeated Tonio
when I replied Tony. ¿Estranjero? Is
he a foreigner? she asked her
embarrassed mother,
the proprietor, as I was leaving with
the red pens I had bought
for editing English but now
used to delete the No,
fué nacido aquí
I had been about to say,
to show that I too was a native.

From Voices of the City, edited by Rosamond King, Charles Russell, Marie Carter, and Robert Hershon. Copyright © 2004 by Tony Towles. Reprinted by permission of Hanging Loose Press. All rights reserved.

From Voices of the City, edited by Rosamond King, Charles Russell, Marie Carter, and Robert Hershon. Copyright © 2004 by Tony Towles. Reprinted by permission of Hanging Loose Press. All rights reserved.

Tony Towle