Slowly she counts out the cards. One. Two. Three. Flip. Red jack on a black queen. Move the black ten. She lifts the uncovered card slowly as if to take a peek before flipping it for the world to see. Nothing new. One. Two. Three. Flip. Sometimes I wonder how I can be related to this woman. She is shriveled, hunched, unable to learn anything new and not always able to remember the things she learned fifty years ago. One. Two. Three. Flip. Black six goes onto red seven. Move the red five and open up a king space. She doesn't miss anything it seems. What she knows, she knows well. Once upon a time, what she knew was everything to my grandmother. Now they have switched places and she occupies a tiny sphere within my grandmother's world. One. Two. Three. Flip. She looks at the black nine and sees something. I look at her and see a family resemblance I had never noticed before. I knew it must be there, diluted through the generations down to me, but I had never really looked for it. The nine is placed on a red ten and I am struck, just for a moment, by the familiar profile of my great-grandmother. One. Two. Three. Flip. c
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.