One of the nice things about looking back at the best stories of the previous year is that we can celebrate the ones that didn’t get the Editor’s Choice Award but still deserve to be lauded. Today’s story is a perfect example of this.
By SJ Sindu
I sat behind him the day he grew wings. I always seemed to be behind him — in class, in line during morning prayer — maybe that’s why I noticed him in the first place, before the wings, before everyone else did.
He was in my third grade class. Red sand always coated his legs, garish against his blue-black skin. He took off his shoes to play in the courtyard at recess, and kicked up the sand where grass refused to grow under the tropical Sri Lankan sun. His friends played cricket. They ran and yelled and boasted under the watchful eyes of the girls who stood by the swings. But he just kicked and kicked at the sand, watching the dusty clouds his feet made.