Thirteen

A child strong enough to be burdened with a peculiar name. Thirteen her parents called her. “That is not a name. That is a number,” offered a five-year old kindergarten peer (a boy with an unadulterated lack of imagination who would grow up stating the obvious and living it too). “It’s not a number. It’s an invitation,”  Thirteen said to him, because that is what she had been told by her mother. And it was only when she was sixteen that she thought to ask, “An invitation to what?” Her mother had stopped planting dandelion seeds in the backyard long enough to say, ” An invitation to flout common fears and defy ordinary expectations.”


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