When Ro woke the room was full of leaves. They curled up in shoes, covered the armchair, a cushion of russet and orange, and oddly, lay in a perfect line of symmetry on the rug. It was as if she had been sleeping in the forest.
The window was wide open, coming loose from the latch overnight. The sill was no longer visible, a collage worthy of the greatest naturalist artists.
The peach tree had scattered treasure on the lawn. Lorikeets had pecked away the fruit, leaving the stones exposed, chipped. The smell rose like burnt sugar.
Branches had fallen from the Brush Box, split and jagged like human bones. Ants picnicked on the sap, running back and forth like children collecting cupcakes from a party table.
The photo of Billy was gone. The one she’d torn to pieces before she’d fallen asleep covered in her own tears. She regretted it now, it was the only photo she had. She might want to look at it again one day when she was old.
She hadn’t even heard the wind last night, but it had played a part in her dreams, declaring itself soft as a spell, floating harp strings in her mind, then louder, cutting shadows in two.
She saw a corner of the photo on the path below the window and ran outside gathering pieces as she went. It wasn’t long until Billy was reformed. His head, his eyes, his beautiful mouth. One shoulder, then another. His legs, the shoes Ro had given him for Christmas.
Ro searched the entire length of the garden but she couldn’t find the final piece of the photograph – the crucial piece, the piece where his heart lay. She rearranged the bits scattered by the wind on the kitchen table. Billy smiled at her in that way he had, but the smile didn’t ring true with a space where his heart should have been.
The wind billowed across the plains; relentless, marauding. Glasses rattled on the dish rack. The newpaper on the night stand rustled. Ro gathered the pieces of Billy she had left and put them safely in an envelope in the drawer where she kept the stamps and spare pens. A veiled light clothed the garden. The wind was wild when the sky was empty of colour. Its power was vicious, luscious, sibilant. There was no telling what could be lost.
* Inspired by the Search Engine Stories prompt – Wild Is The Wind.
Ooooooo….. THIS I LOVE!!
Yes yes. The last line is magical. It is just resonating in this snake-y room of mine. Hovering – held up by the power of those words.
Oh yes, Selma- this may be my favourite of yours so far.
How do you do it? Wonderful, brilliant stories; one after another.
I should be able to walk to my secretary desk in my bedroom and pull out your book of short stories to read anytime I please.
I agree with NO. 3699 above, how do you do it Selma? This is absolutely beautiful. Your descriptive flowing words make reading your work a continued joy. I love the sense of sadness and so much emotion built into every word. Wonderful dear friend. Hugs, G
there is that magical sense, like Lauri said, a fairytale almost, I like that she couldn’t find the piece of picture of that was Billy’s heart, I guess that means his heart is somewhere else, emotionally and maybe physically
the details about the leaves covering her room, that was quite lovely, it adds a fantasy element, I don’t know why but I keep veering towards this to be a fantasy even thought it could be real, I think it’s the way you word it, it’s quite wonderful
You have made my day by saying that. I must admit your story about the cobra really stuck with me. I would have been petrified. I guess that’s where the sibilant sound of the wind came from!
How kind you are. I really appreciate your encouragement. One day I will need to put all those stories together and do something with them. Cheers.
Thank you so much, hon. I feel the same way about your writing. It’s a pleasure to read it.
I think there is a tiny element of fantasy there, maybe what they call magical realism. I think the thought of the wind being so wild filled my head with magic!
some people never let us find their heart… and i think those are the ones we want more than anything to love….. this was lovely sel….
A new vocabulary word for the day: Sibilant.
Writing like this is so full of symbolism and creative use of language that it makes me feel a little high. I mean, not that I know how that really feels or anything…
It’s true, isn’t it? It seems to be the nature of love. We want those we can’t have. Love is a strange emotion.
I will confess that I stole it from the Harry Potter book where they have the big snake. I’m sure JK Rowling used it to describe the way the snake spoke. It’s one of those words I store to use at a later date. I just love it!
And if you ever were presented with a situation where you could get high I know you wouldn’t inhale, right? 😆
I will simply join the others in singing praises for your prose.
Fantasy and romance perfectly packaged in marvellous imagery. It flows beautifully.
“I will simply join the others in singing praises for your prose” -Jonas.
As will I. Fantastic writing, Selma. Much enjoyed. Thanks,David.
“A veiled light clothed the garden. The wind was wild when the sky was empty of colour. Its power was vicious, luscious, sibilant. There was no telling what could be lost.”
And you said you weren’t lyrical. 😉
It’s a spellbinding piece – and makes me wonder just where did the missing piece end up… or, just what else was lost, and what might be found in the wind? I love it – gives me goosebumps. 😀
my dear, one of your best IMO. rich, filled with passion, exquisite imagery, and symbol – this “soft as a spell, floating harp strings in her mind, then louder, cutting shadows in two.” my favorite I think among a piece filled with favorites
and the whole heart sequence so resonant – paisely’s comment so very, very true – and the open ended last line will have me thinking about it for days
bravo & cheers!
Cheers. So great to hear from you!!
I am really glad you liked it. Thank you!
My pleasure. So grateful for your feedback!!!
I think only the wind knows where that missing piece went. Maybe someone will find it and wonder about the rest of the photograph. I am delighted you liked it!
I am just thrilled to bits that you liked it. Thank you so much!!!