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Back to the World

by James Shaffer

Table of Contents
Table of Contents
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10,
11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18,
19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25

part 5

I was nineteen when I finally got my GED. I was the proud owner of a bona fide high-school diploma. God knows I’d read and studied enough with Mama. It helped that I had aptitude. That’s what Mama called it. I called it hard work.

The day I got my diploma my mama was out on a job, but she’d made fried chicken, my favorite, and left some in the fridge. On top of the covered plate was a note, “Congratulations, boy. You did your mama proud. Remember. Hope. Love, Mama.”

Electricity had come out as far as our place back when I was just ten. It changed our lives. Mama’s job and her savings bought us a new fridge and a TV. The TV was a luxury. We’d lived so long on just getting by. What my daddy contributed helped, but it wasn’t enough until my mama started working her own job steadily.

Now that we could afford it, she’d explained, “Gotta have some pleasure with the pain. Helps you forget a little. Gotta have the roses with the thorns.” She’d raise her eyebrows and laugh at her own gems of wisdom.

Proceed to part 6...

Copyright © 2015 by James Shaffer

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