Momma went from bed to bed, gently shaking each of us
awake. “Rise and shine.”
She wore her best outfit—a threadbare dress she’d cut from
curtains discarded by the restaurant where she waitressed six days a week, Monday
But never on a Sunday.
We rose and washed our faces in the tin bucket of water
Momma’d hauled in late last night after she finished work. After we’d wiped the sleep from our eyes, we
piled into the old Ford Fairmont and headed towards town. Daddy parked right next to the preacher’s car
and eyeballed each of us as we headed into church, “yes ma’aming” and “no ma’aming”
and generally minding our manners as best we could. We sat on hard wooden pews and Daddy passed
out hymnals and if we didn’t sing loud enough for the angels to hear, Daddy
would rap us on the head with the back of his book.
After, we headed home for a day of quiet devotions.
“What’s for dinner, woman? I’m half starved to death.”
Momma went to the pump house and returned with a Styrofoam container
of takeout. “Crab cakes,” she said, eyes shining. “Enough for one each. And bread and butter, too.”
“Dessert?” Daddy demanded.
“I feel guilty, Henry.
If we asked…”
Daddy shook his head.
“The Lord takes care of the man who takes care of hisself.” Then he swiped Momma’s crab cake and popped
it in his mouth, daring her with steely eyes to challenge her.
After our meager meal, Daddy opened the Bible and began to
read aloud. We’d run through the Bible
in its entirety six times so far and I was as still as confused as ever.
There came a blast of music from outside. Daddy frowned. “What the blazes?”
“That’s Earle, Daddy.
He’s changing his oil today.”
Deena was sweet on Earle.
Daddy stormed to the front door, opened it up and shouted
out. “Shut that damn music off, we’re trying
to observe the Sabbath here.”
Labels: flash fiction, Trifecta Writing Challenge