Week 8: June 2, 2013

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Mara, I used to love these kinds of events. Children being cute, people everywhere. Something about it feels useless these days. And I don't think I'm doing a very good job either, because my heart has wandered off. I want something entirely different-- something both beautiful and true.

Mara, I used to love these kinds of events. Children being cute, people everywhere. Something about it feels useless these days. And I don't think I'm doing a very good job either, because my heart has wandered off. I want something entirely different-- something both beautiful and true.


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Dear Amanda,

Two years ago I interviewed a woman whose son, Amir, was arrested for murder in a Philadelphia shooting. Deborah Alexander firmly believed Amir had nothing to do with it. They were doing laundry that evening. He never went to the playground, she said.

The week after Amir's arrest was the Fourth of July. Deborah returned to her job cleaning the bathroom of the Philadelphia visitor's center. The hardest part of re-listening to this tape is not knowing what's become of Deborah or her son. Just another apprehended suspect, and a mother whose grace I think about often.