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Old World Vignette
July was sweltering the year I turned six. One stifling afternoon the old Portuguese women in my neighborhood sat on their front steps to catch a breeze. Hiking up their printed cotton house dresses they arranged themselves on the concrete and flapped their aprons towards their faces or wiped their faces on them. A couple of them sat with their stockings rolled down below their knees so their calves bulged. Two women three houses down from each other carried on a loud simultaneous conversation over their perturbed next door neighbors.
All the women were so distracted they didn’t see two crows fly in and land on the wires over their heads.
When there was a lull in the loud conversation the two birds cawed. All the women looked up. Two screamed, three crossed themselves, and all stumbled up the steps into their houses slamming the doors behind them. The crows cawed again and flew away.
Elizabeth Moura lives in a converted factory in a small city and works with elders in a small town. She has had poetry, flash fiction or photographs published in several publications including The Heron’s Nest, Chrysanthemum, Ardea, Presence, Shamrock, Paragraph Planet and Flash Fiction Magazine.