Later in the spring, before the phone call came, Lok Yeay watched me and Kiri after school. “When your mother was just a baby, as small as your brother is now,” Lok Yeay said, “there was a day the birds stopped singing, a day the soldiers came.”
She sat still, and her hands stopped sewing. She didn’t see me or my brother. She was deep inside, inside a sad, sad story.
After a time, she raised her head and began again. “Four years later, we ran from the war. By then I had only two people left—my brother, who is your Lok Ta, and my little daughter, who is your mother. We took turns carrying her on our back, just the way you are carrying your brother."
Copyright © 2012 by Anne Sibley O'Brien (Author/Illustrator). All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.