Steven Shinder

Lemons Loom Like Rain

With his left hand, Mathis raised the slice above his left eye, squeezing the juice onto the scar on his eyelid and into his unblinking eye. He did this with a gleeful smile.

“Holy shit!” Randy jumped out of his chair and backed away, still gripping the suitcase handle.

When Mathis was done, he threw what remained of the slice to the floor.

“When life gives you lemons, squeeze them over your tacos, which are wounds. The lemons sting the cuts. Pain is inevitable. Embrace it. Better to cry now rather than later. You eat the wounds, and they sicken your stomach. So sharp is the sorrow in your guts. But people get it out of their system, despite how painful it may be, flushing it away. Memories of the pain remain, and you may feel a bit empty. But at least a weight has been lifted.”

“If it stings your eyes and your wounds, why would you put it in your body?”

“Just some food for thought.”

Randy could not help but be a bit impressed by this walking monolith's monologues.

“Did you rehearse all that or was it improvised?”

“I'm very prepared. But, in the moment, I can surprise.”

“So can I.”

“Well, then I'll see you in a year, Randy Morales.”

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