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Our Lost and Found Key
by Luisa Kay Reyes

When the title loan company repossessed my car after I was laid off, I felt like jumping off a cliff. My mother hadn’t driven her car in several months and after scouring the contents of her purse and the pockets of her old coats, concluded her key was nowhere to be found. We got by temporarily by walking up the hill to the YMCA to take our showers, using our suitcases to roll our groceries back home from the grocery store, and making the long trek to the library to check out books and movies.

Finally, the time arrived when we needed to go places that were beyond walking distance. So my mother called the dealership to see about getting a replacement key made, but it was a new electronic style of key that would cost several hundred dollars to replace. Further complicating matters, the car was listed in my brother’s name and the dealership required extensive documentation before they’d even consider making a new key. Our situation seemed desperate.

That night I prayed for help in finding the lost key, even crying as I said my prayer. And during the night I dreamt that it had fallen back inside the lining of my mother’s purse. The next morning I awoke filled with excitement at the prospect of finding the lost key, but my mother had stepped out taking her purse with her.

Confused, I saw the sofa in front of me and something told me to check underneath the cushion. So I lifted it up and saw nothing. I checked again to be sure and this time I noticed that in the far back right-hand corner was a moldy red bag. I pulled it out and opened the first zipper section . . . where in all tranquility lay the key.

IMAGE: “Face in Key” by Piero Fornasetti

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Luisa Kay Reyes has had creative nonfiction pieces featured in the Fire In Machines, Hofstra University’s The Windmill, Halcyon Days, Fellowship of the King, and other literary magazines. Her poem “Nancy Drew . . . “  was featured in the Nancy Drew Anthology published by Silver Birch Press. Additionally, her Christmas poem was a first-place winner in the 16th Annual Stark County District Library Poetry Contest.