Gems

I sit alone on the garden bench, our bench, where you once sat. The rain has eased and the air is fresh and clean. Our tree is bare; leaves that once danced in the sun lie crumpled at my feet and carpet the path we once walked. Autumnal colours of orange, yellow, red and gold warm my heart and the pungent smell of rain-sodden leaves fills my soul.

But oh! How I miss you!

My mind accepts you’re gone and, try as I may, I can’t change it. But my heart refuses to surrender and it cries out for you.

The flowers we planted continue to bloom. Each vying with the other in their attempt to raise my spirits. The dainty white and pink of the sweet alyssum tumbling over our garden wall, secreting its saccharine scent. The aster’s starry-shaped heads in shades of blue and lavender mixing effortlessly with the vibrancy of the chrysanthemum’s rainbow florets.

But only one, the delicate camellia you tended so lovingly, has found its way through my grey, lonely existence… capturing my heart, as it did yours. Near white petals, edged in deep pink, surround a golden centre that pulls me in. And it’s then I feel you.

I can still remember… our last walk. The rain had eased and the air was fresh and clean. Our tree was bare; leaves that once danced in the sun lay crumpled at our feet carpeting the path we walked. Autumnal colours of orange, yellow, red and gold warmed our hearts and the pungent smell of rain-sodden leaves filled our souls.

We sat together on the garden bench… our bench.

And here I will sit. And here I will wait. Autumn after autumn. Until you walk with me once more.

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Fuji
Fuji(@fuji)
1 year ago

What a bittersweet and beautiful story, Linda. Quite fitting for these fall afternoons when the sun sets so quickly. I like the repetition of themes and the perfect way the picture illuminates the story. A memorable work.

Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary(@carrie-oleary)
1 year ago

Beautiful story Linda, so full of emotion. Such lovely descriptions that I felt I was sitting on that bench too.

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Emily O'Leary
Emily O'Leary(@emily-oleary)
1 year ago

This is beautiful Linda! As others have said your descriptions really capture the moment and draw you in!

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Christer Norrlof
Christer Norrlof(@christer-norrlof)
1 year ago

I love the way your story opens up, Linda, with the contrast between our (bench, tree) and my (feet, heart, soul), building up to the honest, naked confession “But oh! How I miss you!” It is a sweet, sad story, well written. The descriptions of the flowers are rich and colorful.

Fuji
Fuji(@fuji)
Reply to  Christer Norrlof
1 year ago

It’s lovely how other people’s comments can give a fresh perspective. I’ve read this story many times, but only with Christer’s comment did I fully appreciate the subtle but powerful “our” and “my” contrasts. Thank you Linda, and thank you Christer!

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Genya Johnson
Genya Johnson(@genya-johnson)
1 year ago

Linda, I was so moved by your story. It was so beautifully written and the descriptions made me feel as though I was sharing the bench. I can see why the bench holds personal memories for you.

Thompson Emate
Thompson Emate(@thompson-emate)
1 year ago

A short and touching piece. I love the repetition with its variants, so nicely done. I love the poetic form of the end paragraph. ‘Our Last Walk’ should be archived.

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Eric Radcliffe
Eric Radcliffe(@eric-radcliffe)
1 year ago

Hello Linda, the first paragraph is the door that invites the reader in – (to carry on reading) and you did this wonderfully with the colourful descriptions. The pungent smell of the rain soaked, sodden leaves, invites all the senses into the story. Don’t worry about any aspect of your writing you’re just perfect and more importantly getting better all the time, as we all are hopefully ha, ha.

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Susan Dawson
Susan Dawson(@susan-dawson)
1 year ago

The descriptions really stand out in this story and carry the emotion.

Katy Bizi
Katy Bizi(@katy-bizi)
1 year ago

Such an emotional story. Tears were staining my cheeks by the time I had finished reading this. I particularly appreciated how you used literary techniques such as repetition and the multiple descriptions.

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Sandra James
Sandra James(@sandra-james)
1 year ago

A beautiful story, Linda! I have certain flowers and plants I connect with special family members who have passed so it really resonated with me. I love the sentence ‘And it’s then I feel you.’ Heartwarming comfort easing the sadness. Beautiful!

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Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
1 year ago

What a very beautiful story, Linda. The bench, the flower, the tree, the leaves. It touches my soul and it makes my tears falling down. It was perfectly written. And I love the way you end your story, so poetic.

Juma
Juma(@juma)
1 year ago

Linda, your reading of this story is wonderful. The pace and the pauses are so effective, giving the listener time and space to enter into the depth of emotion. I have loved this story since I first read it, but didn’t quite realize how exquisite it really is until I heard it in your own voice. Well done!

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