Tag Archives: Mother’s love

FF – Footprints

My photo this week, but I’m out and about so I’ll have to catch up properly in a couple of weeks. Also means I can’t add the image from here, but you can see it on Rochelle’s ff homepage.

 

Footprints

The years ticked past as she sat rocking baby after baby through the cries of hunger, teething and fearful dreams. Each one grew, learned to walk, then talk and then push her gently away.

They returned, when the pain or fear or joys heaped upon them by the world were too great for their broadening shoulders to bear. And she, faithful comforter and trusted confidente, embraced them each time anew.

Then one day her chair rocked empty. Gathered around it, they saw for the first time the grooves her feet had worn into the floor, as she had etched footprints on their hearts.

 

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FF – Painting Over The Cracks

With apologies for being a little late this week, here’s my story for the Friday Fictioneers. I was reminded the other day of an old favourite from a few years ago, so if you read this one and want more from me, click here.

For now, here’s the photo from Roger Bultot, that inspired today’s entry. Your feedback is always welcome.

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Painting Over The Cracks

The view was dreary, so Mom picked dandelions to fill the apartment with colour and painted our rooms with cans the store threw out for being mixed wrong. Mine was “Resplendent Ruby”, but it came out green. When it snowed she showed us the beauty in each flake, and bustled us out on ‘adventures’ to scavenge the Clearance shelves for dinner.

For years, we bought it – credulous before our benevolent dictator’s relentless positivity. But even a kindergartener knows food isn’t good just because it’s in date. And that you don’t call Daddy “gentle” just because the bruises don’t show.

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FF – Story Seeking Title

Today’s post is another heavy one, and once again about motherhood. Maybe it says something about the mood I’m in at the moment (although this story is not specifically autobiographical), maybe it’s just the bleakness I got from Peter Abbey‘s fantastic photograph below. Either way, I couldn’t think of a title, so feel free to wade in on that, or the story itself.

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Lisa rocked backward and forward, like a silent pendulum of motherhood. Ethan whimpered occasionally, his tiny fingers rhythmically scraping the tender skin of her other breast. Pain, loneliness and darkness seemed each to magnify the others into an eternity of agony, emptiness and night.

She could faintly hear another world, where her husband and parents breathed and showered and laughed.

Tears moistened Ethan’s hair. She daren’t move, so they fell freely.

When he finally dropped sleeping from her breast, she stood and touched her wet face to his. “I love you,” she mouthed as she laid him into his crib.

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FF – Mementoes

I’ll save my introduction for after the story, lest it count as a spoiler. Here, I will just say thank you to Rochelle for hosting, Claire Fuller for the photograph, and all the Fictioneers for cutting me a bit of slack at the moment, when I am struggling to read more than one or two submissions each week. My story (and then the intro) follows, and your comments and feedback are always gratefully received.

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Mementoes

Ella bought her first display cabinet when she was thirty-four. She’d never really been a collector; knickknacks always seemed like an expensive way to fill a house with nothing.

She chose a wooden, rugged-looking one, because Peter would have liked it. Pirate treasure wouldn’t have felt odd there. His treasures – hers now – fitted too: a piece of coral, seven rocks, a couple of dried leaves and a coin among the favourites. And then, in the final spot, the too-small urn where Peter himself could count them all forever. Her little Peter Pan, who would never grow out of boyish things.

 

Extroduction

I’ve touched on this subject before, but this week is Pregnancy and Infant Loss awareness week, and while Peter in the story is a little older than that technically includes, the grief his mother feels is certainly in the same camp.

I know all about boyish collections – our front window ledge and porch are cluttered with just the sorts of things Peter has left for his mother, and soon I will have a second little collector on my hands. What I can only imagine (and frankly, try not to), is the grief of a mother who has lost her child. The origins of Peter Pan, it has been suggested, are in just this sort of loss, and certainly when I read about a little boy who never grew up, the childish fantasy is edged with the adult fear. There is only one way to avoid aging, and very few of us would choose it for ourselves or our children.

I am thinking and feeling today for the Lost Boys (and Girls), and for the parents they left behind. I know this includes some of the Friday Fictioneers – my heart goes out to you all.

 

 

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Friday Fiction – Row on Row

A moment’s pause in our day, just long enough to find something to say about Claire Fuller‘s intriguing picture prompt (the first image below) for the Friday Fictioneers. I still haven’t worked out what it is, but a couple of phrases sprung to mind from the picture and from those phrases came a story.  I appreciate your honest feedback.

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Row on Row

They stood row upon row. Uniform and yet unique. Brian stood out to me, because of the invisible umbilical cord linking us long beyond the real one, but I know he was just part of the blur of green to the mothers of the boys beside him, behind him and in front.

Perhaps they had mentioned him in letters; perhaps they were some of the boys he occasionally referred to when he wrote.

I stare again at them all. The other boys’ just part of the blur of white surrounding Brian’s cross: uniform and yet unique. Like all the rest.

Photo: Mike Weston ABIPP/MOD [OGL (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/1/)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

US cemetery, Colleville-sur-Mer, Calvados, Normandy / Personal picture taken by user Urban, February 2005 (wikimedia commons)

US cemetery, Colleville-sur-Mer, Calvados, Normandy / Personal picture taken by user Urban, February 2005 (wikimedia commons)

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Friday Fictioneers – Surface Tension

Last week’s literary references seemed to go down well with most of the Fictioneers – anyone would think you were a bunch of readers as well as writers. I have never been a big fan of poetry, but there are some that I have learned and loved, and both Ozymandias and For Whom The Bell Tolls fall into that box for me. Another favourite verse is referenced this week, although this literary theme is purely accidental! Thank you to Rochelle for guiding us, and Santosh writer for this week’s photo.

As ever, your comments and critique are welcome and constructive criticism is strongly encouraged. Thanks to the early commenters, the story below the pic is version 2 (v1 appears below it for posterity). I hope it’s clearer now, but you are welcome to disagree.

On a personal note – no baby yet, but hopefully not long to go. 😉

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Surface Tension

Danny was everything to Ellen: he nourished her, feeding desires she’d never known she had. When they were apart, she felt parched by his absence and when he returned, she drank him in with unquenchable thirst. To Ellen, it was love.

But her mother saw a man who minimised his exposure: who shared Ellen’s unshakeable fixation… with himself.

She saw, and she worried, but having spoken once, she held her tongue to avoid a schism. And she watched her daughter drift away, hoping only to still be in sight when Ellen stopped waving and realised she was drowning.

VERSION 1:

Surface Tension

Danny was everything to Ellen: he nourished her, feeding desires she’d never known she had. When they were apart, she felt parched by his absence and when he returned, she drank him in with unquenchable thirst. To Ellen, it was love.

But Jennie saw a man who minimised his exposure: clinging with that same unshakeable fixation, to himself.

Jennie saw, and she worried, but having spoken once, she held her tongue to avoid a schism. And she watched her daughter drift away, hoping only that she would still be in sight when Ellen stopped waving and realised she was drowning.

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Friday Fiction: The Fork People

Still no laptop. Still no word count widget, but I think this one’s 100 bang on. Photo copyright to Marie Gail Stratford, FF central is over at Rochelle’s. Enjoy!

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The Fork People

“They come in the night: thousands of them, streaming in from the hills. They squeeze through the gaps under doors and around window frames.”

“Who, Mum?” His face was bright with excitement.

“The fork people,” I said, trying to keep the frustration out of my voice as I rubbed soap up my arm.

“The fork people?”

“Yes. The people who secretly replace all the cutlery you bury on your plate and then accidentally scrape into the bin.”

“The fork people?”

“Yes. Because there’s no way I’ve become such a drudge that I stick my hand elbow-deep into rubbish every night.”

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