After The Funeral

The mourners stood around him eating cakes and sandwiches not made by him. Some catering company he employed to do the work, did the work while he stood near a corner of the room, watching his guests share mourning and their memories  and stain the carpet with their drink and crumbs. He, who hated fuss above all else, and kept emotions strictly under wraps nodded at each face that passed offering him comfort and support, unsuspecting as they did, that all he longed for was his solitary thoughts, in which he he’d sought refuge all these years, while Mavis, his  wife now deceased, who spelt reflection with the word ‘Abyss’ filled his life with whims and groundless fears, till her death offered him relief and left him with the chance to dream once more, and sit and watch the natural world and catch his breath.

So thorough was his daily care of her, that those around her wondered at his quiet gentleness and diligent support for one who loved hysteria as if it was her only child. In fact, by chance or was it luck, the union had proved fruitless in that way, and wardrobes full of dresses and her shoes would be her unenduring memorial. He loved her without doubt, but more for herself than him, and always sought to ease her remorseless anxieties. Strangely once she knew that she must die, courage came from somewhere in her frame and brought a dignity to her passing. She, who made a fuss of everything, and thought a chipped cup a calamity, faced her death with humour and her spoken thought that, “You’ll be alright,”  was her comfort as her husband sat beside her on the bed.

He, who for years had lived within his wife’s concerns, alone at last, could set his dreams alight, or so he thought. He might explore and get to know people he had not yet met and tread the path to discovery, and taste adventure ungoverned by her fears.

But now alone, and challenged by his imagination, he realised the very door that kept this world beyond his reach, gave him the licence to  shape it’s landscape and possibilities without cost.  As he reflected thus, a wave of sadness startling in its suddenness, swept through him as he finally realised how her concerns had shielded him from himself, and allowed him his whimsies without risk. Nothing, he finally understood, makes a dream more  frightening  than it becoming possible.


About Peter Wells aka Countingducks

Trying to remember what my future is
This entry was posted in character, community, creative writing, Environment, faith, Fiction, Life, Love, recreation, Relationships, Romance, Uncategorized, writing and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

28 Responses to After The Funeral

  1. mimijk says:

    I was transported from the first sentence. Terrific, evocative writing…thank you!


  2. catterel says:

    And so beginneth the next novel – scary thought!


  3. Ina says:

    Lovely. His new freedom… I hope he will enjoy it! 🙂


  4. A subject you love to explore. What happens when life presents us with what we thought we wanted? Yes, my friend, underneath all the humor and joy for life you exhibit, there is an observer of the heart and mind of the solitary soul.


  5. ksbeth says:

    this is very, very beautiful and well-written. beth


  6. Rainee says:

    I thought this sentence was really powerful, “Nothing, he finally understood, makes a dream more frightening than it becoming possible.” I am enjoying your novel, Peter and am nearly half-way through it. Do you think I could interview you sometime about the process of writing the novel and getting it published. I would like to include it in a post on my blog. I am doing a unit of study about Authorship and Publishing so I am also really interested in how you went about it all. If you are open to the idea would you mind emailing me and I will think up some questions to ask you, if you would be so kind? My email is It would further promote your book as well 🙂


  7. Superbly created, this paints a vivid picture of a scene that is merely a prelude for something else. Your final line ‘Nothing, he finally understood, makes a dream more frightening than it becoming possible.’ changes everything, and is so, so true.


  8. CKoepp says:

    Wow… Very thoughtful. 🙂


  9. babs50nfab says:

    So much truth. I often say, ‘Be careful what you wish for!’


  10. Lee says:

    Quite right. Thoroughly eyebrow raising!


  11. renxkyoko says:

    This is good, Peter Wells. I feel several subtle emotional transitions towards his feelings for his wife.


  12. **The mourners stood around him eating cakes and sandwiches not made by him**

    great first sentence! xxx

    PS. Peter, how do I place a facebook thing on my blog like you have above. can you email me? Help Me do it?


  13. Your title enticed me to read on. And I’m glad I did.
    As he reflected thus, a wave of sadness startling in its suddenness, swept through him as he finally realised how her concerns had shielded him from himself, and allowed him his whimsies without risk.
    Such a true and so well written.


  14. Al says:

    It often astounds me how you zero in so exquisitely on man’s foibles. You must be at least 200 years old.


  15. Bruce Goodman says:

    How come you read my soul? Stunning! Thank you.


  16. Reblogged this on Laurel's Reflections and commented:
    Peter captures this beautifully! ‘Nothing makes a dream more frightening than it becoming possible’, indeed.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. russtowne says:

    EXCELLENT! A pleasure to read, and a powerful punch line.


  18. jmmcdowell says:

    You have an amazing insight into human character. That final sentence is so true, and when we become aware of that fact, it can quickly become an overwhelming feeling.


  19. Layers on layers here, Peter. Perhaps we’re happiest not delving too deeply into our complexity, because when we unexpectedly find ourselves faced with our deeper desires, llike your man here, we may not like what we find. Another very finely observed piece of writing.


  20. Your ability to pin down characters and the world in which they live is exquisite, Peter. I can’t remember who said it but this reminds me of that saying, ‘Be careful what you wish for.’


  21. Oh Peter, this is absolutely wonderful!! What a magnificent piece of writing and so much truth in it for so many. 😊


  22. sandradan1 says:

    Beautifully written Peter, very touching. SD


  23. LadyBlueRose's Thoughts Into Words says:

    I like when I don’t want to peak at the ending
    I didn’t want to miss a line, I really like this…
    the last paragraph was such a profound thought of clarity in his now… reality
    Take Care…You Matter….


  24. nelle says:

    True, true, true.


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