After Life

Was that her, it seemed so long ago? Another life lived in another age. A young girl dressed  in white, beside the man she’d known since her birth. The son of her dad’s best friend, who played with her in his childhood, watching her back whilst they grew up in school.Her  wedding ring, unmarked, on  wrinkled hand, sends  memories rising from another time. His face, so warm and young . The sense of being home when he was there. The new born baby nestling in her arms. Him working the shop whilst she stood by his side. An ordinary life from any point of view , free of trophies or the cheering crowds, but,  full of meaning and rich in  small events.

This was her world. Now only  memories . A  glance across a table top. His finger tapping on the dinner plate. The children squabbling over the last chips while he, exhausted, smiled at their youth. The preparations for some  festivity: dressing the children and settling in the car. The pride she felt to be a family and wife to the man who owned and owns her heart. All this is gone, as he is gone, robbed of  many years by some freak accident that took his life, and shut down hers in widowhood. Twenty years on and sidelined by  her grief she sits alone.  Asks God for strength,  existing day by day. shaking her head and talking to his photograph. “What would you make of that” she asks out loud, as some news item flashes on the screen.

Her children love her but distractedly.  Her unfailing sense of being understood vanished with his final breath . Maintaining her pride in a world now alien and  kept at bay by manners and  moral rectitude. Knowing that at least she had a time, when, shared with him her whole day seemed alive. In memory she has no aches and pains and  runs as though she’s carried by the wind:  stands in the rain with him , and feels the water running down her skin. Her daughter interrupts her train of thought, “Do you miss him”. ” Yes” is all she says. “Miss him” is not the phrase she would have used.   A fire glows briefly in her tired eyes as she recalls the life she once enjoyed. Sitting in her shapeless widows garb, she briefly ignites her urgent womanhood.  


About Peter Wells aka Countingducks

Trying to remember what my future is
This entry was posted in character, childhood, creative writing, faith, Health, Life, old age, Relationships and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

41 Responses to After Life

  1. Tapish Gupta says:

    This is so touching. Don’t know what to say..


  2. babs50nfab says:

    Incredibly amazing. No words I can write here would be worthy of yours in this post Peter.


  3. Heartbreaking. You know grief from the inside, at least you write like you do.


  4. pegoleg says:

    Lovely, lonely, powerful words. Thank you for sharing them.


  5. Caroline says:

    That made me cry. You write beautifully


  6. I love how well you convey emotions without actually mentioning them directly. That’s a sign of a great writer…..Keep writing 🙂


  7. nelle says:

    Poignant. You tell a great story…


  8. maturestudenthanginginthere says:

    A beautifully written powerful piece.


  9. Larry Lilly says:

    From someone that has experienced full measure of loss on all levels; child, spouse and parents, from someone that hasnt, the words are beautiful and haunting.


  10. backonmyown says:

    The sense of loss is palpable. I’m very touched.


  11. ღ Amy... says:

    Memories, can be beautiful and yet so painful to remember. As long as we have memories, we can keep that person close to our minds, our bodies, our souls.

    Nice…I like it.


  12. **** stands in the rain with him , and feels the water running down her skin**

    Oh, My Heart Aches, aches, aches. I understand this pain.



  13. Julie says:

    It makes me want to appreciate each day of mine with my loving husband. Thank you Ducks.



  14. Man, you are back with full force. You’re my favorite writer.


  15. Writerlious says:

    I love reading your posts too –I added you to the blog roll! 🙂


    • Its something to be added to your Blogroll. I really appreciate it. You are already on mine because I find your Blog such a great resource and inspiration. You never know. Someone might ask me to write an article one day, and then where wil we be !


  16. eof737 says:

    Is this nonfiction or fiction? Just curious … Beautiful tale. 😉


  17. This is splendid, so affecting, so personal and yet so out-reaching, just as I would imagine it would be like looking into this woman’s eyes–her soul. Wonderful writing!


  18. Christine says:

    Submit this, don’t wait for someone to ask you to write an article. More people need to read your words, to feel your heart.

    A fox in your house! I hope you write about it 🙂


    • Thats such a nice thing to say. I am a bit aware that there thousands of would be writers scrabbling for the small amount of space available. I find this a bit daunting and,in truth, don’t have much idea how I would go about getting published but you have pushed me to look into it. Any tips welcome of course


  19. Ampbreia says:

    Sweetly told, pognant and poetic.


  20. Katie says:

    This is exquisite writing. I know the answer and this place she is in. The soul constantly seeks it’s other half and it may be unconscious but when you loose your soulmate, you crave, and are capable of finding another. God doesn’t mean to leave some of us alone. It just means He has other plans for us, there is another soul waiting for me somewhere.


  21. Reblogged this on countingducks and commented:

    I thought I’d let this post see the light of day as it has been one of my more popular efforts and possibly not seen by my newer follower !


  22. I haven’t seen this one and so thank you for sharing it again.
    You capture so well the musings of an ageing woman. It is said that loneliness is the blight of our modern time. This brings forth a picture of so many sitting alone relying on memories for company.
    Thank you, Peter

    Liked by 1 person

  23. A well captured account of someone who lost another and so herself. Definitely worth a republish else I would have missed this little gem.


  24. mikesteeden says:

    Read this twice in swift succession…kept hearing read aloud in my head…Radio 4 aloud! You have achieved here a thing I aspire to achieve…a ‘complete’ story/an entire book in just three paragraphs.


  25. laroseedespetiteschoses says:

    Thank you, it’s beautifully written and I am glad you repost it. It resonates with me as I just lost my husband of 45 years four weeks ago. It’s so sad to lose one so loved, yet how lucky we are to have known and loved.


  26. So sad. Thank you for reposting it. Love “Her unfailing sense of being understood vanished with his final breath.”


  27. Lovely piece, Peter. Reminds me of my maternal grandmother.


  28. I haven’t seen this one. I possibly wasn’t following you back then. This is simply beautiful writing. Very glad I discovered your blog whenever that was and that I’ve been able to read lots of your terrific work. Here’s to lots more 😊


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