Sparring Partner, by Jeff Shelby

by audreyhoman

#26: “Sparring Partner” by Jeff Shelby

Synopsis: How to fight for survival, for the domestic violence set.

Lucy Ann Montoya wiped the blood from her nose.

The altitude, she always told people. It was the altitude of Mistwillow that caused her nose to bleed so often.

A well-written slice of life in an abusive relationship. I’d almost say there’s nothing remarkable about this story, wherein an abused woman gets out the only way she can, but I think we’re at a point where this kind of story is always welcome and always appropriate because domestic violence is something of an epidemic in this country. And in fact, the level at which this story is written — both in terms of the overall tone and the description of the violence in question — makes it perfect to include in a high school English syllabus. It’s short, sharp and would make a great conversation-starter on the topic.

Yeah, it’s probably for the best that I don’t teach.

“Sparring Partner” appears in Jeff Shelby’s Out of Time collection.