The Look of Pain


She wears the look of elegance; tall, slender, graceful.
She walks…no…glides, as if the next step will take her to the clouds instead of through this crowded room.

Her face is beautiful in an angular way;
penciled brows perfectly arched over deep set brown eyes.
The nose is straight, between flushed, high cheek bones.
The mouth, upturned in a soft smile, shows perfectly white, slightly imperfect teeth. She touches you with a look that says, I’m ok, are you ok? You know she’s not.

She mingles with the crowd, a gathering of mutual friends, serving delicate hors d’oeuvres. Overt looks follow her. You follow with the wine, a dry white Bordeaux.The din of small talk, repetitious, bordering on boring, weighs on the air like oleander on a hot summer day. But she is very social, and with a charming smile responds to the din with wit and wisdom. She is far from boring. Nor is she bored.

Hor d’ouvres and wine consumed, snippets of conversation trailing through the door with the last guest, the party is over.

With an audible sigh, she crumples into an easy chair; graceful,
elegant, pale. The gathering was a success, but spinal stenosis takes its toll.
She wears the look of pain.

2002

One thought on “The Look of Pain

  1. Composed, deliberate, courageous, strong, graceful and fragile are the words that this brings to mind, and also that life isn’t always kind to us, nor does it need to be if our spirit is in the right place.

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