At the beginning of the novel, Bud is told that he will be leaving for another foster home, and he mentions that for some reason his "eyes don't cry no more." Later on in the novel, Bud meets Herman Calloway for the first time, and Herman is rather rude to him. Bud mentions that if he were a regular kid he would be crying buckets, but his "eyes don't cry no more." Bud also tells Steady Eddie that his "eyes don't cry no more" after Eddie tells Bud that he is a tough kid for not crying while the band members teased him. The reason it is difficult for Bud not to cry is because he's experienced so much tragedy throughout his life that he is able to repress his emotions and control his tears. Bud has lost his mother, lived in various foster homes, and wanders the streets homeless during the Depression. These heartbreaking experiences have made Bud tough and taught him how to control his negative emotions. Bud is essentially used to experiencing tragedy and protects his emotional well-being by repressing his feelings and not crying.