Photo Story: Scrubbing In

For the first time that night, she paused. The sink flooded her memory. She pressed her palms into the counter’s edge and saw another sink from long ago. The party in the other room was nearly as raucous as the bombs which had stopped her then, throwing her across the room. She had staggered home in bloodied scrubs to a pile of rubble, her two sons and husband dead.

Heels clicked across the floor and gently added to the dishes. “Jihan, when you’re done with these, you can head home.”

Dr. Sarraf looked at the dishes. Time to scrub in.


Joe Bernardi is an English and Social Studies teacher in Michigan. Husband, father of four. Knitter, sketch artist, born again. He used to dig basements.

14 Responses to “Photo Story: Scrubbing In”

  1. Teddy Kimathi says:

    The memories and emotions in them well-knitted in the story. Loved it!

  2. Excellent. This is how it is done!

  3. Arna Radovich says:

    Wow! So much in so few words!

  4. This is amazingly powerful. Please write a novel. I want more of your craft.

  5. Susan S Anderson says:

    This rang true all the way through. I have met this person. She lives in my neighborhood. Thank you for writing this.

  6. Vicki Kloosterhouse says:

    Wow, Joe, it is hard to write anything in 100 words. Powerful

  7. Archana says:

    Loss and pain of a refugee perfectly captured

  8. Lois says:

    Powerful story. Great job!

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