Honourable mention in the 3rd Annual Geist Literal Literary Postcard Story Contest.
Wal-Mart reindeer glitter in the window of the old-age home, a woman in a red sweater holds a red pillow and weeps in front of a fake Christmas tree, a Sav-On Santa, a silent phone, the only one left in the cafeteria scene, besides Jesus in straw made in China, asleep in a halo of kitchen light, others gone to bed forever; people wipe tables, clean crumbs.
Cutting through some holly bushes on my way to the new extension at Orchard Park Mall, running across a parking lot in twenty below, Visa card in my pocket, I am on the other side of the Rockies running across a parking lot in twenty below with a Visa card before it all goes. They have Sport Chek now. Better jeans, hip stuff, hipper than last year’s stuff. I try on a top, looks like a wet suit, Tina Turner of the deep. It’s cool and shiny, I buy it. The lady in the store goes, I am amazed at the quality of the sequins on that shirt. A lot of people have tried it on. Not one sequin has come off. I’ve worked a lot of stores where the sequin would’ve fallen off. But here, it doesn’t. Here the sequins do not fall off.
I walk back through the snow, thinking about Jesus in the straw, the lady crying with the pillow, a shirt others have tried on and sequins so tough I know it must be love.