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Fortune Teller, Atlantic City

by Maureen Sherbondy

Every July my mother returned

through the beaded curtain

certain this time

the palm reader would foresee

optimistic news, inferred in

the lines of her aging hands

a stellar future narrative.

Her ears listened for clues

of the handsome man in her future,

and the hint of endless dollars

raining down like manna

from the gray Jersey sky.

I watched her defeated, solemn exit

through beads parting like water,

my mother taking the bad

news like a fish biting down

on a sharp, empty hook.

About the Author

Maureen Sherbondy has a forthcoming book, Dancing with Dali. She also has published a short story collection and eight other poetry collections. She teaches English at Alamance Community College in Graham, NC.

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