My Name is Mary Ann

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“There isn’t much longer Miss.
Half a mile along
And we’re there, I swear to it.”
“Your reassurance is unnecessary.”
“My apologies Miss Margaret,
You’re just lookin’ worn is all.”

Margaret was indeed tired.
She hasn’t walked this long
Since Little Mary Ann...
“I’m not worn,
I am not even the least bit tired.
I could walk on like this for years.”
“You’re lyin’ I think Miss,
If you want to rest we can.”
“We are almost there,
There is not a need.”

Margaret would have loved to rest
On the passing park benches.
Sit for fifteen minutes,
And watch the people go by.
Count how many people she saw
In ponytails.
One.
Two.
Three.
She could make them out from where she was standing.

“Let’s sit Miss,
You look like you’re going to collapse.”
A whispered “Thank You”
Escaped Margaret’s lips.

“Let’s count the people in ponytails."
Margaret was astounded.
This girl knew her game,
She hasn't played since she was with Mary Ann.
“Look that man has a ponytail!”
Margaret laughed at
The girl’s wonder.

“Why do you look so sad Miss?”
“I would play this game with my daughter.
We would sit on the benches,
And count the people in ponytails.
She never actually knew she was playing.
She was only an infant when I had her.
She would’ve been about eleven now.”
“I’m almost eleven.”
“Maybe you could have been friends.”
“What happened to her?”
“She was stolen from me…
My own child.
I shouldn't be telling you this.”
“I can see this troubles you Miss,
Let’s keep walking.”

They arrived almost momentarily.
The weak neon sign read “Hotel Luxe”.
“What was your daughter’s name?”
“Mary Ann.”
“Do you miss her?”
“More than anything.”

They looked at each other for a moment.

“I really should be going,
Thank you for showing me where to go,
I don’t really know the area.
Goodnight then Miss….”
“Mary Ann.
My name is Mary Ann.”





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