Valerie Alsbrook

Scrambled Minds, Scrambled Times
9 x 7 in.

As I walk down the one-way aisle of my neighborhood grocery store, I think, “This is like another strange episode of the sci-fi life we are all stuck in.” There are few people, there is scarcity of food, and of course there is no toilet paper. Random thoughts drift though my mind: “Be patient; be kind; be grateful that you are healthy today (maybe).” The man stocking produce says “Don’t touch anything!” I jerk my hand back before I realize he is joking. It’s hard to tell. We are both wearing handmade face masks. When I get to the cashier she is not wearing a mask but I am, and everything starts to feel absurd. I have a momentary urge to say “Stick ’em up!” I get a text message from my sister: “There’s a man on the I-49 bridge threatening to jump.” I hit my mental wall. Get me out of here!

© Valerie Alsbrook