Lazarito &
The Habaņero Chilis

         He was not all there, meaning he had been born
         "with problems." That's what our parents said.

         His father all he ever said was, "No Lazaro, No
         Lazaro, No Lazaro." But Lazaro was always

         getting himself into trouble. He liked to run
         out to the streets naked, then he would aim

         his peepee out at the cars and urinate in big arcs.
         His father would come running out after him,

         screaming, "Lazaro, Lazaro, me vas a volver loco."
         Then there was the time Lazaro snapped all the

         Habanero chilis off the plants that grew in his father's
         garden, and he stuffed them in his mouth. Ah, the screams.

         His parents had to call the ambulance and when none
         arrived, they asked Talo, our next door neighbour

         for a ride to the hospital. After the chili incident
         we never heard from or saw

         Lazaro again, and his parents came and went out of the house
         as if they had been childless and content all their lives.

--- ©1999, Vigil Suárez
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