Another winning entry in Brevity‘s Holiday Smile contest:
It is Thanksgiving, again. My smile is a weapon cutting off access to my grief-treasure. Or perhaps my smile is a slash given me by the gods of loss, always careless with their powers, when my mother died the Sunday after Thanksgiving.
Her smile was a whole language: it made her a child, impish, until near the end, when it made her uncertain, afraid, vulnerable. Something small and furry you want to pick up out of the snow, cradle, help to survive.
My smile has survived – big-toothed, upper lip drawn high enough to expose my gums – because my sister cradled me, my old loves did, my new loves hold me still. All with their arms stretched out to me – me, insignificant as grass.
Isn’t this what the holidays remind us to do? Run towards each other, with food. Bring…
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