Mango

It travelled unsteadily to a fate unknown
Wobbling back and forth
Wrapped in a tight, green skin

Juicy, orange flesh protected
As it rolled off the plate
Seeking a safe harbor under the table

A temporary refuge
For a tropical fruit in the off season
Of Indiana

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Dry spell

Image

The drought continues

Words refuse to come

Without regard

For the

Thirst

Of the people

Comforted

Girl child with a tiny head
Wears lovingly plaited braids
Each one tied off in a colorful bead

She reaches out from her wheelchair
With fragile fingers
To hold her mother’s hand

Brown fingers interlock

Together they are strong

Hunting for Houses

s and c

“Have you seen what our rent will be next year?” I asked the Mister, feeling panicked.

He was casually surfing the internet, searching for his next deal.

“It’s almost doubling,” I shrieked.

“Hmmmm….seems pretty high,” the Mister responded, only half listening.

I re-read the email from our landlord, hoping I had a transposed the numbers or even imagined an extra number at the end. The number remained the same, revoltingly high price.

This email was just a simple mistake, sent out too early and without being proofread. I justified the situation in my mind. There was nothing to worry about. Until the next day, when the same email came, asking for a decision on if we would stay or go. This one was signed with a smiley face emoticon after the landlord’s name, which should have been a skull and crossbones.

“Did you see the newest email she sent?” I asked the Mister the next night.

He was focused on disassembling a computer. He looked up at me with a screwdriver in one hand and nodded.

“Sounds like it’s time to move,” said the man of few words.

This was the very opportunity for which he had been waiting. It was just the push that I needed to agree with him to move, yet again. Only this time, it would be into a house that we would buy. No more surprise fees, changes in the rent, or upstairs neighbors stomping across our ceiling at night.

Since those emails, our search for a house started and continues.

Not to worry, we aren’t alone in this mission. It’s a big job to navigate the market, so we got help.

We found the most inexperienced real estate agent possible who has in turn taken us to the most colorful set of homes and locations. She even got us an exclusive peek at “the cutest house sure to sell quickly” that reeked of urine and rotting corpse. Some of the homes have fist sized holes in the walls and are missing minor things, like door knobs and handles. While some of the other homes are missing bigger things, like the walls and electrical wiring.

“She’s trying her best,” said the man of few words when I attempted to fire her.

Aren’t we all, I silently thought.

Not everyone is lucky enough to have a quiet hero stand up for their potential in a world where intention and effort don’t hold much weight.

So the house hunt continues with our real estate agent, saved only by the good graces of the Mister.

Too close to the quick

The morning was dark and I felt too lazy to flip on the lights.  As I lounged on the couch and sipped from a mug of hot coffee, Miss Kitty purred next to me.  She looked lovingly up at me when I scratched behind her ears, pleased to have company for the day. 

I set my mug down on the table next to the couch and noticed a pair of forgotten nail clippers, abandoned by my husband after the previous night’s project (his toes).  It suddenly occurred to me as the perfect time to trim Miss Kitty’s nails.  The cat, the tool, and the time were practically bundled up and tied with a bow for me.  I would be a fool to ignore the chance to snip her claws, I foolishly thought.

“Miss Kitty,” I said, petting her soft, white head.  “It’s time to go to the beauty shop and get your nails done.”  

Her loving look turned to one of suspicion as soon as I picked up the nail clippers and tucked her underneath of my arm into a gentle but iron-strong hold.  She stopped purring and began squirming, wriggling back and forth, desperate to escape.  She knew what it meant to “go to the beauty shop” and it always ended in sore paws. 

“Not so fast, Miss Kitty,” I said and tightened my grip. 

I held her little paw in my hand and squeezed out the first claw.  She yanked her paw back and I lost my grip.  It was a wrestling match, woman vs. cat, and I’m sorry to say we were both losers.  In the struggle, I snipped one nail too close to the quick.  Miss Kitty screamed like a Hell demon and stared at me with wild and untrusting eyes.  I shrieked in surprise and she scratched me, afraid of more nail trimming.

She has not forgotten about the experience yet, but appears to have forgiven me with the help of Whisker Lickin’ treats, excessive apologizing, and more head scratching.  I knew we were on the mend when she started to purr again, and fell asleep next to me for a nap later in the day.  If only forgiveness was as easy with humans, to be cut to the quick and still able to forgive, but never to forget.  Remembering is what makes us human, right?  

Blisters

White feet

Used to socks and boots

Brought out into the light

By the warm day and a new pair of leather sandals;

Now wrapped in Band-aides and covered in blisters

They are keenly aware of the joy and pain

in changing seasons.

If only…

“When are you getting up tomorrow?” the man asked his wife.

The man focused on setting the alarm on his phone, while his wife sat on the edge of the bed and pulled off her socks.  She threw the socks, one after the other, to the floor.

“Whenever I feel like it,” she replied without looking at her husband.

The man raised his eyebrows, silently questioning the sock-less woman next to him. 

“I quit my job today and I’ll tell you why I did it,” she said calmly.

The man listened attentively and wondered how his wife had kept her little secret from him for so long.  Usually, she was bursting with excitement when she had a piece of news to share.   He felt conflicted, he was relieved his wife finally did what they had discussed so many nights, but upset that she waited so long to tell him.  I’m sure she has her reasons, he though t and waited.  She always filled the silence if he waited.

The woman continued speaking as she fluffed her pillows.

“They tried to make me work on Good Friday,” she explained with a straight face.

Her husband laughed in disbelief. 

“It wasn’t the guns, gang bangers, bed bugs, drugs or abuse that did it for you?” he asked.

“Nope,” his little wife said, settling down into her freshly fluffed pillows.

She breathed a sign of relaxation.  Her pillows felt perfect as her head sank down, surrounded by downy feathers and cotton. 

“I never minded all of that,” she said, reflecting on the day. 

Her husband propped himself up on one elbow and stared at her in confusion. 

“What? Really?” he asked.

“Yup, the clients were never really the problem.  It was always the management, safe in their clean, little offices, pushing papers and pressing for more rules and deadlines.   My clients were just trying to get by from day to day with next to nothing.” 

She reached over and turned off her bedside light with a click. 

“How could I begrudge them for surviving?” 

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