This YouTube video is a reading of an excerpt from In the Context of Love .
Angelica talks to (the absent) Joe, recalling the time they drove down Route 21 past the steel mills and factories into downtown Cleveland. The time setting is in the mid-seventies.
If that man were you…
“Cuyahoga Iron Works, Republic Steel, and Cleveland Steel & Tubes pumped the blackest, most foul-smelling smoke into the sky, but the open-hearth furnaces fascinated me. Flaming tongues rose from orange mouths that could have swallowed men’s lives whole. I imagined the steelworkers’ eyebrows and lashes were singed, their every pore packed with dirt. What would it be like to be married to a man who coughed smoke into his wife’s and children’s faces at night, who left soot on his pillow in the morning? When he left for work, a dark smudge where he had slept would remind me that he defied death every day. I told myself if that man were you, I would love you even more.”
Linda K. Sienkiewicz is the author of In the Context of Love, adult contemporary fiction, a 2016 Eric Hoffer Book Award Finalist.
Angelica Schirrick had always suspected there was something deeply disturbing about her family, but the truth was more than she bargained for.