An Afternoon Concert
5,000 bodies pushed and pressed against each other, bobbing in time to the music.
We were at an illegal concert right in the middle of Birmingham. It was July 21, and the scorching Alabama sun threatened to set us all aflame. It was hot, but none of us cared. We were having too much fun.
Nadya and I held hands as we ground our bodies together. We were melded together. No matter how hard anyone pushed, we wouldn’t separate. We were sticky with sweat, but we just kept grinding and dancing.
Then, the cops moved in.
“THIS IS AN ILLEGAL GATHERING. DISPERSE IMMEDIATELY.”
It sounded like the voice of God booming through my eardrums. The cops stepped forward, smacking their truncheons against their shields with every step.
CRACK, CRACK, CRACK.
Their faces covered by gas masks, they looked more like an alien invasion than our local police force.
The voice of God boomed. The shields cracked. The kids roared. Nadya screamed.
Then, the gas fell.