Jennine Capó Crucet is the author of the novel Make Your Home Among Strangers (St. Martin’s Press, 2015) and the story collection How to Leave Hialeah. The recipient of the Iowa Short Fiction Prize, the John Gardner Book Award, and the Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award, her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Review, Epoch, Prairie Schooner, Ploughshares, and other magazines. A winner of an O. Henry Prize and the Picador Fellowship, she’s originally from Miami and works as an assistant professor of English and Ethnic Studies at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln.
Our running joke: anniversary cards that said, Congrats on being halfway through our marriage! Does it mean something good or bad that neither of us pointed out by how many years, with that last card, we’d overshot?
Jesenia juts out her lips as she runs her tongue over her teeth. She probably tastes chalk—she wrinkles her face at the tang of it. She does not answer the nun, but stands and walks to the arched entrance of the church. She cups her hand and says, I’m so totally sorry but I’m freaking gonna die if I don’t. She leans down, drinks from the holy water.