Kenlyee slept. I walked her up and down the stairs and through the halls of the court house until her little body relaxed and fell soft against me. Kenlyee slept as we sat down back in the waiting room and the woman and her daughter with the bruised cheeks smiled at me and my achievement.
Kenlyee slept as her grandma ran past us, toward the bathroom. Her grandmother lookd me in the eyes and her face was wet and resilient I stood up and Kenlyee slept as her other grandma followed behind, her eyes red and tears streaming. She nodded her head at me, "Ten years". I sat back down. The doors to the court room opened and Kenlyee slept as everyone filed out, bringing with them their tears and this strange, anxious, yellow energy. I saw her mother's face, red, and white, and dappled just like mine, and Kenlyee slept as my eyes, too, filled with emotion.
Friends and family gathered and clung to one another through these invisible bonds of uderstanding and together created a great swirl of dark brown and pale white. They brought her daddy out, one hand connected to another man in pink handcuffs, and the great brown and white swirl buzzed about him like some provoked hive of bees. I watched him hug her mother goodbye and Kenlyee slept as I trembled and heard myself gasp. Her daddy kept looking at her and looking away and looking at her and looking away, so I walked her to him and Kenlyee slept as he gave her one quick, painful kiss on the head, like such as a child would submitting himself to a shot from a syringe. Kenlyee slept and I could hear the lady and her daughter behind us, "I'm confused.", "Oh I think they're two sisters". They took him away and we buckled Kenlyee into her carseat. My mother stepped into an office with two men in business suits, one with square glasses. We sat down on the stairs and Kenlyee slept as the public defender stoped to as on his way out, "What are ya'll waiting for?" He barely noticed my glare as her mother answered," My mother is talking to somebody." We put Kenlyee's cover over her little glowing face as we stepped out of the courthouse into the wind and cold. We made sure the car seat was firmly locked into the base and then we started the car and drove out of Lonoke, Arkansas and away from it's promise of "Life as it should be". We bumped off the exit and the interstate was smooth as we made our way back to Little Rock and Kenlyee slept.