My Mother, Part I: Cards


waking from dreams of my mother, always on my mind

Originally posted on Leonard Durso:

She was a force of nature, a short, dynamic, attention-seeking woman who charmed all who knew her. She would dance the tarantella in between serving courses at our family dinners, and sing off-key oblivious to criticism to Al Martino albums. She was a foot shorter than me but my long legs had to do double time to keep up with her when walking. And even though the weekly poker games at the dining room table were only for pennies, she took it so seriously that you would think they were playing for souls.
She actually played cards twice in my memory: Saturday nights with Uncle Joe (a cigar in his mouth, his green visor pulled down low on his forehead), Aunt Bernie (placid, accepting defeat before she even looks at her hand), her sister Mary (who fretted over each hand as if the mortgage depended on winning), Charlie (who was…

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