Her face had a set, strong jawline.Her voice heavy from years of smoking and a retaliatory nature. She lived in the small town, once strong and industrial ,now a home for cracked sidewalks and the unemployed descendants of factory workers.A devoted Republican and intrusive in a mindful mother’s way,she was recovering from radiation, and suffering from the quiet life of a retired widow.
Her cheeks were creased. There showed seventy years of smiles and determination. She lit a cigarette, setting it deftly in the slotted green ashtray. Her words marched to a steady, vibrant cadence, her sentences often beginning with “I’ll tell ya what.”
How many winters had she weathered in the smoky bar she ran for her now passed, overweight husband? So many nicotine stained nights that hardened her soul.She was kindhearted as her sex presumed, but harsh at the flip of a coin.
It was a thousand miles, but just down the street. The “Jungle” where she had been a fresh faced girl, and,was the wrong side of town still, to this day.But that was so far away now. If you had seen that girl all those years ago, would this be imaginable?
Perhaps the town showed her who to be.