Thrift Shop

First Ever Setswana Poetry Awards Hosted In Botswana

By Joan McNerney

I descend clutching ateetering banister to thebowels of this holy place. A sign welcomes me toSt. Mary’s Basement Boutiquewhere scent of unlovedclothing assaults me. I finger grubby blousesand skirts hanging limpweek after week unwanted. Where is it? Hidden beneathmounds of faded tee shirts?Where is that swag I willbrag on for months? At last I uncover somethingbeyond belief….a mohair sweatersnow white with pastel flowers.A good fit, my prayer answered. Retired ladies glance up.They are volunteers fillinganother empty afternoon. The cashier consults her price list.“One dollar” she says as I reply withquick “thanks” fleeing blissfully. When I get home, my bonanzais baptized in cool water and sudsnow reborn lustrous and all mine.

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