You feel the heft of the glass door
when you push it open, relieved
to be safe from a blast of dust
blowing across the parking lot.
You hesitate. Your eyes adjust
to the darkened room, just past noon.
You turn toward the laughter. Three folks
at the far end of the bar are turned
away. You think it might be nice--
at your age, anyway--to be
a day drinker-- convivial.
You would swap stories. You think,
They would listen.
Of course, you are an old woman
in a wrinkled shirt, carrying
a large handbag. No one sees you.
You find the ladies room, and then
you hesitate, thinking you might
sit in front of a slot machine,
at least for a little while.
Instead, you head for your car.
Nancy Harris McLelland taught creative writing, composition, and literature for over twenty years and Conducted writing workshops for the Western Folklife Center, Great Basin College , and the Great Basin Writing Project . An Elko County native with a background in ranching. McLelland has presented her "Poems from Tuscarora" Both at daytime and evening events at the Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko. Her essay, "Border Lands: Cowboy Poetry and the Literary Canon" is in the anthology Cowboy Poetry Matters .