Blinding

A few months ago the Dundee Rep ran a short story competition, you can find the details here. Any-who long story short about entering a short story competition, I sadly did’t win. Since I didn’t win I figured I might as well post it on here. Enjoy.

 

Blinding

 

Those who deserve our thoughts are never those who have them. I have a loving wife and four grown children, but those I love are never those I give my thoughts. My mind wonders now, more than it use to and more than I’d like. A hazy summer day filled with blinding light is how I remember her. Illusions tinged with yellow and a gentle breeze from an open window form the world in which I live. As my wife takes my hand I watch her leave with the older boys, the boys her own age, older than I was then and younger than I am now. Moments before we were closer, encompassing each other, now only a hand cups mine, biding. She wants to leave and be with me at the end but the other boys are waiting, cheering at the other side of the curtain as a shard of light breaks through the dust. Blinding. I focus on it as it moves back and forth from darkness, trying to find something tangible in the motion to hold. It was their idea and she leads me to my room. Draping hair sweeps against my face as swelling eyes begin to weaken. “It’s almost time” and all three of us know it. A switch is flipped and it’s done, a last slow breath escapes. I am calm for the first time and the last time in my life. Her grip on my hand tightens as she rolls off to embrace. A new step has been taken, a different world awaits. She lays and sits beside me, breathing heavy as tears start to fall. I want to hold her then, the way she holds me now. She starts to slip away and her grip never fails. “You can let go now if you want?” they tell me. I want to hold on, but I don’t know how. A yellow summer dress falls around her shoulders. I want to force her to stay, but I don’t know how. She’s too delicate. I don’t know how to act yet. I follow her sheepishly past the hall and to the door as she leaves. I notice the flowers by me on the bed. I don’t remember who brought them, no doubt a comfort in another wise sterile room. I hold one out for her to take. She smiles and walks away, the other boys are waiting. Her hand breaks free and the light is blinding. She’s walking away with the other boys; they’re older than I was then and younger than I am now. I can barely look and the light is blinding. She’s walking away with the other boys and my wife kisses me for the last time. I can barely see and the light is blinding. I can barely see and the light is blinding.

 

 

 

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