The Way the Mind Works

Her feet pounded the pavement, tiredly and haphazardly.

Her ankle hurt, her knee was swollen, and the air felt like a wet coat. She pushed through the weighted mist, partly because the app on her phone told her to, partly because she felt her stomach was softening slightly to the touch.

Her feet hit the uneven sidewalk clumsily, her body feeling the exhaustion in every step.

She did not play music, partly because she wanted to hear her breath and perfect her form, partly because she did not want ignorance to be blamed if someone were to rape her.

It was that kind of a world she lived in.

Walking towards her was a man with Gavin Rossdale hair and a blue, well-tailored suit.

She felt herself instinctively straighten, her core connected serendipitously with her spine. Her heaving chest, held tall. She felt her breath fall into place. Her form, effortless.

“‘Scuse me,” she said in a slightly higher and softer tone than normal.

He did not look at her as he paused momentarily. She wasn’t sure if he was allowing her by on the broken concrete or if he had stopped, lost in a thought more important than her.

Her body returned to the slumped form, laboring away through grimaced teeth.

She was reminded of her grandmother’s back porch, a periwinkle blue with an old, white and green glider.

When the paint had peeled, her grandfather scraped away the old and replaced it with the new. When the rocker became rusty, her father replaced it with a swinging hammock, like the ones her grandmother used to enjoy at the beach. Her father could be good with gifts sometimes.

She thought of this now, partly because she wanted to be reminded of a place where she was loved, partly because the mind does that sometimes.

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