by Sally Simon
Christine didn’t talk to strangers; so when, in the orange-hued haze of first light, an old woman
approached, her muscles stiffened.
“Would you like a shell?” An outstretched hand cupped a chipped clam. “It’s not perfect, but,”
the woman turned it over, “just look at that purple .”
Christine clasped the shell, holding it between them. They watched as the rising sun illuminated
an iridescent layer, previously hidden. The old woman nodded and continued down the beach.
A seagull soared overhead. Her phone pinged. Pls forgive me. Christine exhaled and pocketed
the shell as the tide stretched to touch her toes.
Author: Sally Simon (ze/hir) lives in the Catskills of New York State. Hir writing has appeared in or forthcoming in Longleaf Review, Citron Review, Emerge Lit, Raw Lit, and elsewhere. When not writing, ze’s either traveling the world or stabbing people with hir epee. Read more at www.sallysimonwriter.com