Lazy mid-afternoon, thick shade trees holding the heat at bay. Old woman, old garden. Both sleeping, wrapped in a blanket of summer, taking deep contented breaths, dreaming of rain, of water. Interweaving past and present. Encircling all, a charm of hummingbirds.
The groom’s mother places a lilac crown on my dark hair, hands me a basket of petals. I sprinkle them on the dusty path, admiring the cascade of pale purple. One dew-drop survived the heat. I lean into it, see myself reflected there.
Commotion at the door. Reporters, flashing bulbs. Carrie’s calm voice – “She’s resting.”
“Where’s the flower girl?” Mama’s gentle response – “Said she was thirsty.”
Lucy steps into my secret space, hidden among the trumpet vines, next to the cool spring. “Ma-maw Carrie said you fell in love with water. After a wedding. When you were little, like me.”
So quiet in the woods, filtered sunlight rippling through the trees, making them shiver and dance. Sound of splashing. Water swirling over rocks, flashing blue and silver. I kneel, I cup my hands. I drink deeply.
“Yes I did.” Ocean eyes full of wonder. “Tasted like stones singing, like flowing forests.” Wisps of hair catch a slight breeze as she nods. “I know.” I think she does know.
Sudden rainstorm sends guests scattering over the rivulets of lilac petals, makes me laugh out loud, still kneeling by the river. Water in my hands, in my hair, pouring down from the lilac crown like a bridal veil. “I will,” I whisper.
Carrie unfolds a newspaper clipping from exactly one year ago, reads it to the reporters. “Ms. Helen Hoffman, famous conservationist, celebrates her 87th birthday quietly, at home, with close friends and clean water.” She adds “This year the same”, guides them out the door, joins us for the ceremony. We dip our cups into the spring. We drink deeply. It tastes like promises kept, a life well lived, silvery blue hope. We lean back in peaceful silence, watching tiny green hummingbirds disappear into red flowers.
4.5 2 votes
Post Rating
Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
7 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
musing mind
musing mind (@musing-mind)
1 year ago

Very poetic. Loved reading.

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

I love how detailed the story is. You can imagine the beautiful scene clearly!

Fuji
Fuji (@fuji)
1 year ago

I have a special fondness for collective nouns, so when I read “a charm of hummingbirds”, I was captivated. Some of my other favorite parts were her two descriptions of what the water tasted like, first as a young girl, then as an old lady. What more could any of us ask than to celebrate our 87th birthday with promises kept and a life well lived? The part where the water flowed from her lilac crown like a wedding veil suggested that she too entered a marriage that day – to the ideal of clean water. I hope there are people like Ms. Helen in our world today!

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

Lovely, Juma. Left me with the taste of pure, fresh water…delicious!

Comments without a personalized avatar will not be published.
Susan Dawson
Susan Dawson (@susan-dawson)
1 year ago

Your use of short, snappy phrases works so well to push the narrative along.

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

Very nice Juma. I would like to taste the fresh water too. You create a vivid / clear picture on my mind about the scene. Congrats.

Become a PatronHelp support our family-friendly mission

Most Voted Comments

Avatar
8

Bait

It takes a real talent to tell a story in so few words. What was…


Avatar
6

Endure and Sing

Inspirational piece. Am glad you picked the rat to be the protagonist in your story,…


Avatar
6

Endure and Sing

Such a sweet tale - and with a good moral to the story. I thought…


Avatar
5

Endure and Sing

Wow! This is a good story! Really good to read to little kids, the moral…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Hi Katy, it really does add an extra dimension to hear your story read aloud…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

In my neighboring country Denmark, we have the classical storyteller Hans-Christian Andersen. Your sweet story…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

A really nice one with a wonderful story line. I can see why this was…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

A beautiful story! I was reminded of seeing Paul Potts and Susan Boyle on Britain's…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Your story inspired me to keep going no matter how discouraging it gets. At times…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Thank you so much for the feedback! I pray that the young readers will be…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Thank you for taking the time to comment and convey your thoughts on the story.…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Hi Katy, don't we all feel like the rat in your story at times! We…


Avatar
4

Vows

I must admit it was the picture of the church, with its grave yard, under…


Avatar
3

Between Belonging and Dying

A very powerful story, Daniel. Your writing makes it easy to feel the reality of…


Avatar
3

Between Belonging and Dying

Oh my gosh, Daniel. Your story really defines the word superb. You make me experience…


Avatar
3

Between Belonging and Dying

A horrendous situation, more so because so many people find themselves going through it. A…


Avatar
3

Between Belonging and Dying

What an extremely powerful story Daniel, really well written and with an ending that had…


Avatar
3

Between Belonging and Dying

Daniel, this story is one of the best flash fiction stories I've ever read. You…


Avatar
3

In Memoriam

It's terrible to lose someone you love and accept that he is not a part…


Avatar
3

The Problem with Women

I think Carrie has said it all. We rest our collective case.  ? 


Recent Comments






www.Voice.club

Upcoming Site
Maintenance
Scheduled for Today @ 8:45am ET

USA Timezone – Eastern Time – (GMT-5)

Days
Hours
Minutes
Seconds


Voice-Team will perform upgrades and add new features!

During our scheduled maintenance
Voice.club will be inaccessible

7
0
Selected Authors may submit comments (5 Credits)x
()
x
Scroll to Top

Sharing a Post

Why do my friends need to SignIn to read the post I shared?

Actually, this is a voting security feature. During public voting, only club members can read posts submitted for that contest. Since anyone reading the story is able to vote (click the Like button), we reserve these capabilities to members who SignIn. Before we implemented this security feature, people were voting multiple times and making the public voting process unfair and out of balance. To fix this, our staff finally decided to allow only members who SignIn to read the stories. Membership is free and easy, and ensures our club is safe, secure, and family-friendly!