Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Story time

I've got to say thanks to Elizabeth for inspiring me to write a short piece of creative prose in her comments.

It's something I do a lot less of these days and while it gives me great satisfaction to write a rounded composition, maybe my critical function has recently been taken over by editing and this is casing a block.

Anyway I looked back at this and thought it is worth reprinting for posterity on my own blog...

A Broken Silver Chain
I wrote to a Mlle Bovary once upon a time.

We quickly became pen-friends, exchanging letters for several years until the intimacy had grown that we had to make the effort to meet.

We arranged to meet at Biarritz when I was on one of my trans-continental journeys.

I stayed in a nondescript hotel, and the night beforehand I could hardly sleep for dreaming. We met before the Atlantic waves under a glacial autumn sky.

She had acquired the use of the holiday home of a family friend nearby where we stayed for the week until our desire for one another was temporarily quelled and it was time to part again - back to our lives in the suburbs.

Our passionate scribblings maintained their steady flow back and forth, always promising to break away from the suffocating ties we were bound in.

But after a year the letters suddenly stopped. Maybe she had grown tired of the waiting. Had I noticed a trace of doubt that the pledges we had made to one another were anything less than complete? Or maybe it was a growing realisation that some flowers bloom just once in their lifetime.

As time allowed my memory to fade I grew accustomed to the routine of daily expectations and I grew more settled and comfortable. But this calm was broken when I received a package one day.

Inside was a delicate silver chain - her ankle bracelet. The clasp was broken and with it was an envelope containing a short newspaper report of a car accident, and the letter she'd had with her that day. 

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