Things Like This Happen

Of course, they were playing ball
in the narrow alleyway

between apartment buildings,
where nothing could ever grow.

They were tossing the ball back
and forth, back and forth, trying

to upstage one another,
without malice, as boys do,

little rubber ball bouncing
in a dark corridor

between two red-brick buildings,
back and forth, until one boy

threw it hard and high. It soared
over the other boy’s head,

who swung around fast and dashed
into the street without looking.