Fiction | March 01, 1988

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They were sitting around a trash fire when the American came with Mara and took the guitar from Jaime.  The fire was of old broken crates and pallets, the leavings of every port city.  It had not been built for warmth; the Philippine nights were always warm and humid.  It had been built for the sake of community; it gave light, and gave them a center around which to form a circle, and cost only the refuse scraps of wood from the Naval complex at the port.  The American sat in the center of the group with the girl at his side and tried to tune the guitar.

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