“Are you time?”
There were screams coming from the hallway and she was pacing the dark room picking up objects and putting them down.
“Are you time?”
Florence had been gifted a pair of scissors earlier that day, actually. Well, she stole them from the craft box. A nice trinket for her room. Large too. There was a giant bruise forming on her shin where she had just run into her armchair on the way to get them.
Don’t eat your buttons, Florence,” Mya  had said to her earlier
“Where is my cuckold?”
“Girl, what?” she laughed, turning her back to check on Bob and Florence pocketed the scissors with the red handle.
A new shiny object to touch. She went back to touching the pearly white buttons of her sweater and lifting them to put them in their mouth.
“Oh my god, Flo, I have to watch you every second.”
Mya gently took her hands and guided them away from the buttons and her mouth and set them on her lap. She looked her in the eyes.
“Flo, this is not lunch time. It’s craft time.”
“Where is my husband?”
Mya stroked her cheek and walked over to Janette.
“Are you time?”
She picked up one of the pieces of green wire and tried to make it into a fork so she could finish lunch. She began to nibble her fingers. Try to eat your carrots, someone had said. Keep mistaking them for thumbtacks and you stick them in my arm. Keep mistaking them for buttons and you tuck them in your shirt. Are you time? She began to bite her nails and then saw a pea on her shirt. She picked it up and put it in her mouth.
“Florence!”

It was after dinner and dark, pitch black, unusual. There were moans and yelling and Florence was standing at her bureau stroking the scissors and a shell she had found. She couldn’t remember the day at the beach picking up the scissors but she did remember today at lunch picking up the shell. Try to form a sentence.Try to remember things for whole minutes at a time.I like broccoli. We had wine sometime near November, it was raining and chilly. I wore white with a pearl knit sweater, there were daisies on the table and I almost threw a fit. I saw my mother and try to remember the dance.
Florence began to sway, cupping the scissors and the shell. There was no light from the window and she couldn’t feel the bruise on her leg. Sometimes, she can stand alone for minutes at a time but most days she needs help getting back to her room, undressed, in bed. The scissors had been in her pocket and would have been discovered if Mya had time to change her but she was clean.
“Eat your crackers, Florence.’
She had no accidents in her diaper that day. Mya had helped her with her lunch. Try the zipper; it looks like an upside down fork so let’s eat our soup with it. Where is my knife?
“Here, here is the napkin.”
But what came next?
Try to remember how to pick  up the fork. Florence began pushing the scissors into the shell in an effort pick up the food and eat it. She did not hear the man enter the room or walk up behind her or even whisper,
“Flo, are you ok?”
Eat the napkin?
You wore a white dress that day.
When I was a kid the world was a rainbow and we chased the yellow storms for that sweet pinch of gold. I had goosebumps in September. I lost everything come November.
“Where is my husband?
White and pink trim.
“It’s me, Bob.”
Where is my spoon?
Try the light switch. You just had it here somewhere.
Where am I?
Bob touched her shoulder to get her attention and she remembered the way it felt on her wedding day. The world is a colorful frown. An upside down money dispenser. Luck of the something.
You were petrified and pretty and already broken by a midnight stallion                          so he
“Florence, the power is out.”
She held the red handle firmly and released the shell and steadied herself on instinct. Her movements now slow and forced and wobbly. But she was able to turn around. Where am I? Who AM I? The room was lit only by a battery powered ballerina in the corner so she could see the outline of his face and glasses and checkered collar but nothing from the chest down and she didn’t really notice Mya behind him. She neatly placed the blades to his throat and pushed as hard as she could until he gurgled and grabbed at her arm which was strong from supporting herself on wobbly knees. She was able to push it in further. She was able to stand. No accidents today.
I wore white that day.
I ate cake that day.
I have bean soup somewhere.
I want cake.
This is a button to put in my shirt.
She pressed harder and then grabbed his top bottom. As he fell backwards,  Mya screamed, alarming Florence. Shaken for only a moment, yet mostly unperturbed, she pulled the button off of his shirt and let him fall.
“Something tastes like lilac bleach.”
Get that out of your mouth!
There was a spoon.
I wore white.
I wear white.
It is permanently night.
Mya was screaming and another attending came and she heard gurgling. Steadying herself with her right hand again, she licked the button first and then placed it in her mouth, on her dry tongue and tried to swallow it feeling it lodge itself in her throat. You cried and you cried and you swore
Where am I?
Is it night?
I did listen.
I am listening.
I am listening.
I didn’t do anything: it was a riding lesson.
I am listening.
I was a faithful virgin until you.
The rain is whispering and broncos are chasing you
to canopies of sense and wonder and you wonder.
“Flo, are you listening? I brought you some cake. Vanilla.”
Suddenly two arms were around her and pushing on her stomach until she coughed something out.
And you promised him it was nothing.
Nincompoop.
I’m a ninny,” she said being lowered to the chair
Here him whinny.
Here me whine.
I said something.
I’m a ninny.
I said no.
He said, “bend over, Flo, you will learn to like it.
She turned to both of them, their mouths agape, Bob sprawled on the floor.
“There is my cuckold,” she pointed.
She was sitting in the armchair now listening to Mya cry.
“Are you time?”
The nursing home was filled with cries.

“the black out” or “the woman who was raped by the men”

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