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Dirt This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     There’s the baby next door who cries all through the night, there are the kids who play soccer in the street every afternoon, there’s the dog that barks relentlessly for no reason whatsoever, and there’s the couple across the street who own the vegetable shop. But I’d have to say that the weirdest neighbor I have is the Dirt Guy. He lives on the corner of the block next to ours. He’s old, with Einstein-like hair, and he always wears pajamas.

The oddest thing about him, though, is the dirt. He will occasionally spread a small tarp in his driveway, dump some dirt on it, and sift it with a rake. I would see him doing this on my way to school, and when I return, the dirt’s still there. I never knew why, and when I asked my mom, she wouldn’t tell me. I often witness the Dirt Guy outside in his pajamas toiling over his dirt. It depresses me to see that his best friend appears to be dirt. I mean, dirt seems to be his life.

One day I got so curious about what the dirt was for that I tried to peek through his windows. Of course, this was the one time he wasn’t home (he probably went out to buy more dirt), so his lights were off and I couldn’t make out anything.

Finally my mom told me what the dirt is for: He has bonsai trees. He apparently needs to air out the dirt every once in a while.

I realize now that I should never judge a book by its cover, because no matter how dirty it is, it could lead to beautiful bonsai trees.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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