By Deborah Rodriguez
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Extra info for A Cup of Friendship
So she asked, “May I get my things? ” the man yelled at her, pushing her shoulder roughly. She started to climb in, then turned to her uncle and hugged him. He whispered in her ear the poem that her own mother had recited to Yazmina when she was only a baby: The moon is made round by the right hand of God. The moon is made crescent by his left. But it is God’s heart that Makes my love for you forever. She recited the last line along with him with much difficulty, choked, as she was, by the fullness in her throat.
Then Yazmina gave Layla three kisses, each saltier than the last from the tears on her cheeks. “You’ll have a blessed life, little one. Now show me that smile of yours, for that’ll be my parting gift,” she said. But the younger girl had started to cry herself, afraid she’d never see Yazmina again, knowing she could be next. From her pocket she pulled her prayer beads and put them into Yazmina’s hand, clasping it tightly with her two little hands, not wanting to ever let go. “Enough good-byes,” said the man with the brown teeth.
Tommy’s earnings, which they’d shared in the beginning, had enabled her to pay the first six months’ rent for the café, but her ingenuity and hard work had made it the success it was. She’d known that his money had been earned by killing, that he’d become a shooter, a paid mercenary fighting the Taliban in the south. But she’d figured that it was for a good cause. He was killing the bad guys. Sometimes she felt that life in Kabul was like the Wild West, where bad guys were bad and the good guys were good, where the rule of law was as ephemeral as peace.
A Cup of Friendship by Deborah Rodriguez