fuzzy slippers, Jess Provencio

Plein-Air-7Lampara de la Desierto, 15X22, watercolor, Gary Buhler


fuzzy slippers

she buys her tacos at the Jack in the Box
they’re two for 99
one for breakfast
one for dinner
do you have any change
so i can add one for lunch

yellowish grey hair
falling out of foam curlers     a bandanna tied over
unlit cigarette dangling
lipstick settled into the cracks around her lips
drinking out of a coffee mug
that has grimy coins     no liquid
and a bright purple lipstick stain
mama taught her to cross her legs like a lady
she still does     but she loses her balance
when the bus driver brakes for a stop
rolls sideways onto the seat
housedress faded     stained
the flowers are some indeterminate pastel shade
fuzzy slippers flopping
doing nothing to aid her precarious grip on balance
some teenagers snicker behind notebooks
they imitate her when she turns the other way
no matter how questionable her sobriety
she is not immune to their mocking
remembers when she was that carefree
but that was a lot of problems ago
and she gets through those problems
with this bottle of thunderbird

Jess Provencio

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