needed the job to pay her bills
to feed her kids
to feed her crippling addiction.
“The girls joke that I’m on drugs but I’m just always like this.”
I was 15 and unsure how to take that.
I smiled and said I talk fast, too.
Marigold was a great coworker.
She was quick on her feet.
Always willing to help out.
And did her part of the side work.
She had two kids.
A boy and a girl.
I can’t help but wonder if they knew that Mommy was struggling.
Mommy wasn’t okay.
Mommy was dying.
Marigold was fired after too many customer complaints.
“She seemed like she was on something.”
“She forgot our order three times.”
“I couldn’t understand what she was saying.”
She visits us sometimes.
Stops in for a bite to eat and to say hello.
Last Tuesday she came in and sat for a while.
Ordered a beer, even.
She looked good.
She seemed happy.
That day she told me it was the anniversary of her mother’s death.
Hanged herself and Marigold was the one to find her.
I looked at her and understood.
She needed as much of a fix as she could get.
McKenzie Bonar is a student at the University of Pittsburgh-Greensburg, majoring in Education and Creative Writing. Her first poems were recently published in Pendulum. She waits tables at a sports bar.