April 12, 2019


The fifty-something woman with short, fake-auburn hair stood outside of the drug store, bent over with fatigue and leaning against the newspaper machine, tapping out a message on her phone, using the same two fingers that held her cigarette between them.  I passed her on the sidewalk.  She noticed my copper toenail polish and I noticed her shoes.  They were a kind of shoe that told me she stands a lot during her work shifts.  But I didn't mark the early wrinkles in her coppery skin from tanning beds, and she didn't note the way I look down when I walk by people, a thing that makes me unqualified to wear copper toenail polish, a thing that makes me pay attention to shoes.

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