Children of Cambodia (4)

I asked you for permission to take this picture
When I met you again on my way out of the wat
And you graciously agreed
About an hour ago, you and your younger sister were pleading me, without success, to buy a wooden snake that I had no real use for
I bet she didn’t have a clue what it meant to be posing for a picture
She’s still such a baby and wouldn’t keep still
But you did your very best to hold her there
While I waited for some tourists to move away from the background
And when I showed you the image on the camera screen, you gently said “thank you”
My face grew hot with shame
Who should be doing the thanking –
Me who had enjoyed all the privileges
Or you and you sister who , after entertaining me, had to fight for another day?

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