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 Category:  Commentary and Philosophy Fiction
  Posted: December 20, 2020      Views: 57

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 ABOUT
SUZANNA RAY 
Joined September 2019

She is an accomplished poet and is currently at the #52 spot on this years rankings.

She is also an active reviewer and is holding the #28 spot on the top ranked reviewer list.

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Christmas Story Contest Entry
"The Miracle" by Suzanna Ray

Sara didn't really mind that they were going to have another 'sparse' Christmas this year. She only felt sorry that her mom wouldn't believe that it really didn't matter if they didn't have much in the way of material things.They had each other!

They had a roof over their heads (rickety as it was). They had food to eat! (even if it was, whatever was left over, when the little diner, where her mom worked, closed for the night.)

Stanley, the owner of "The Best Food in West Texas" (at least Stanley thought so, because he cooked it) allowed Lisa (Sara's mother) to take home however much she wanted of the 'daily specials' and any other food that would have to be thrown out, according to State Laws, Stanley said.

Sara wasn't sure if Stanley's offerings were really the "Best" in all of west Texas, but because she had never been anywhere in west Texas except the little town where she lived; she had no way to confirm if Stanley's claim was true or not.

One thing that was true, was that she and her mom were very fortunate to have Stanley as their boss. Not everyone had a boss as generous or easygoing as Stanley. Sara was aware of this, because, as she went about her job of making sure that each table and booth had salt, pepper, ketchup, napkins and such, she could see the stress and worry on the faces of those who were permitted only one half hour for lunch, and some times had to leave before they had finished their meal because they dare not be late returning to their jobs for fear of losing them.

There was very little conversation in Stanley's diner, which was unusual in a little community like this one, where folks usually got world news months after the latest disaster had occurred because newspapers from the outside were few and far between.

More unusual was the absence of chatter of local gossip, speculations about the weather, or tall tales about how the teller won a first prize for his entry at some county fair some twenty years before.

Most all of Stanley's customers sat grim faced as they ate their meal
and left. This town was surely not a place to find oneself losing their job, or their family place due to foreclosure, or celebrating Christmas.

Sara was pretty sure that there were rich people in Texas, what with oil wells and things such as that. But not out here in west Texas, where there wasn't much except scenery, (if you cared for the kind of scenery they had!)
Even the biggest ranch in the county wasn't much to brag about; and the town wasn't much more than a place that was closer than anywhere else! At least it had a bank, a general store, a bar and grill place that sold only burgers, that were, verifiably the worst ever, and most importantly, a post-office, even if it was in the corner of the general store.

As Christmas approached, Sara thought more and more about what Christmas was supposed to be all about. Joy, Peace and Good Will to all, were words she had heard, but outside of Stanley's generosity, limited to the food he allowed she and her mother to take home, she had not seen much of it.

She wanted everybody in her little town to have joy, peace and goodwill. She wanted, with all her heart, for them to know what Christmas was! They surely needed it!

And so it came to pass, that early one morning as Sara was walking to work, the first part of the miracle happened. It was one of those sunrises that make you want to stop, just to take it in, wait to see what it would do. Sara did just that, breathing of the crisp winter air. " I wish I could capture this moment and give it to everyone " she cried aloud, and then smiled at the notion. "Well, you could if you used your imagination" said a voice inside her head.

Now voices in her head were nothing new to Sara who had little opportunity to talk to other people.
So she immediately started to look at all the things around her, to see if she could find Joy in some thing that she could hold in her hand.
Sure enough a bright shiny rock caught her eye, and then a pretty red one and then a pine cone that had fallen from one of those scrubby pines that grew here and there on the hillsides that sloped towards the town.

Then she noticed the smell. The rich odor of earth and pine sap. I can carry that too, she thought, but I will have to ask Stanley.

It seemed that wings grew on Sara's feet as she ran all the way to the diner to ask if there was a place to display her beautiful things. Not only did Stanley agree, he picked the spot himself. A place that could be seen the moment a person entered the diner, a place that caught the light from the window.

Well, it wasn't long before the customers started to comment on the display. Some kidded Stanley about his growing nature collection, but none asked him to remove it. Soon they were asking if they could contribute to the collection and much conversation was initiated by one asking another what it was and where it was found.

Sara's collection of Joy was not only built over Christmas that year, it grew over the many years that followed! . . . So if you ever happen to find yourself in west Texas, you may chance to find yourself in that little town and find yourself hungry, because it is a long, long way from wherever you were coming from. And, you may find Joy, in the only place in town where you can get something to eat. Try Stanley's daily special! It is actually very tasty,

Christmas Story contest entry

Recognized

Author Notes
This Story has been changed from a previous posting.

Changing the dynamics of human interaction for the better is a miracle to be welcomed, always!
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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