Last night Suzanne called to tell of a friend in El Salvador,
a high school girl, who was beaten by her dad
so badly she had to go to the doctors
and to the police. Of course the police did nada.
She is such a great kid,
Suzanne said. Never in trouble.
Always trying to be helpful.
The kind who always does whatever her daddy says
because, after all, he brought her up right, right?
Didn't I bring you up right?
he shouts sometimes late at night.
The neighbors hear him (don't they?)
though no one ever complains.
Maybe they hear the wife saying,
stop now, stop.
But he keeps shouting . . .
And don't you make a fool of me . . .
Don't you ever run around
in the streets with boys like those other girls . . ..
But she's a smart girl, this girl.
She knows if the boys don't abuse her,
her daddy will . . .
Why is this story so familiar?
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