These Are My People: Shanna Harris


Sheba the cat never smelled that good again.

She went unnoticed, unimportant, just another face to greet and forget. Politely enough she smiled, laughed a bit, joked a bit then faded quickly.

In the freezing cold of a February winter on the mountain’s edge overlooking the valley, the sun came out and shined from her face. She forced a double take from me.

The snow melted away as if July had suddenly sprung a leak before it was supposed to and stole the frigid air right from our lungs.

I stood there and looked at her and she at me. Our eyes blinked like newborns at the sudden bright light that ignited in between us like a bonfire.

As the snow drifted on the winds that tickled the pine needles down from the branches to land on the pristine white, we became believers in faith and one another.

We picked up our brooms, our mops and our feather dusters and buckled into mundane work while we wove our foundation with light and shadowed ghost stories.

Our hands took away the dirt that accumulated on surfaces long ignored, like she’d been, like I was. The intricate loom swish-clack-swished our lives together into a southwestern design.

The colors were rusted sand, Ponderosa pine, snow white, gravel gray, sunset pink, sunrise yellow, and broken sky blue. We wrapped within each stitch making it our fortress.

When the work of the night was completed, the cleaning utensils put back where they belonged, we remained. We stayed bonding our bindings with tomorrows that have yet finished their tasks.

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