by Tricia Mccallum
Rushing in to a truck stop,
A quick rest room visit; coffee.
I stand alongside her.
She leans in deeply over a sink,
Peering in the mirror,
Wide-eyed under the fluorescent light.
I try not to stare.
She’s washing her face
With the bright green soap from the wall dispenser,
Pumping out more and more,
Lathering it up until her face is thick with it.
Her diaphanous gown grazes the floor.
Her silver heels are perilously high.
She may be 17.
Do you want some coffee? Some food, I ask,
She turns to me, her face traced with suds,
No. Thank you, Ma’am,
In a tone that heads off
She needed to eat.
Her face must be stinging by now.
She’ll snag her dress on those heels.