A Soldiers Farewell

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic
I've never met my Grand Father, he died before I was born. This is a short story I wrote in English class under a theme - 'Now and Then'.

Submitted: November 27, 2011

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Submitted: November 27, 2011

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Great hands stretch to the sky, brilliant greens clutched in their grip of iron bark, shimmering in the yellow, orange pool. Cotton soft clouds taint the blue sky in shards of clean white. Shadows score its flawless form, songs escaping from their clamped beaks. Breaking from the group, a single bird floats down on wings of air to land between the splashes of color, pink, red white, that litters the field.The green sea, freshlyshawn scents the air, mingling with the aroma of earth.

A harmonized song strokes my ear, sailing from the beak of the single flightless bird sweet and light. It echoes through the tops of the trees, and the skies above , like a swan, weaving between the giant slabs of polished stone, engraved with letters of the past. They look like white chalk on a black board, shimmering in the oily sun that dusts my neck with familiar warmth. Deep shadows stretch, pooling over a single plaque that sinks beneath the darkness. Jumbled letters and numbers becoming clear. A hearty laugh fills the air as we remember the creased face studded with sparkling eyes hidden under years of laughter.

In the colorless photo, standing stanch in a disciplined suit his breast crested with shinning pennies, the solider salutes. Prickling my fingers, I place the shades of red petals along side the plaque marked with a poppy. Unaware, the speeding cars stream past, a movement in the still scene. Puffing clouds of blue and gray, they choke the summer air. I watch them pass, the chain fence stealing them away from the beauty and peace, where worry is unheard of. I turn and reach for my cheek, now tainted by damp salt from the oceans pool, letting fly the memory buried deep in my heart, 'Lest We Forget.'

Winter now claws at my skin. Umbrellas cast shadows. They do little to protect us from the frozen bullets that pelt down from the grey waves of cotton. The great hands stretch towards the sky, their brilliant greens, snatched away, leaving bare arthritic fingers, shivering in the howling chorus. Grays littler the floor, fallen from the roes hips, the ocean green sea now stilled. Dulled in the shadow, slick with murky pools, Granddad lyes, forever stilled.

Frozen fingers clutch tired flowers, replacing the saddened petals trampled into the grass from a time less like this. Once again I look out past the chain fence to see fewer cars. Their horns blaring, is now what fills the air, the floating song of the feather tailed creatures silenced. Stepping back from the proud soldiers' grave I take in the scene with one last sighing breath.

Sliding down the window, the rain fails to reach me, as the frosty glass separates me from the world. Warmth hugs me, the interior of the car protecting me from the weather, as we remember his laugh, his smiling face, how joyous he was; what grace. Staring back at me, from a black and white grey card, he chuckles at the frozen bullets happy for the life he had. What wonders he saw. Through battles of the past, to the present, he has stayed strong and now lives forever in our hearts, seeing the world as it is now, rejoicing in life.

As dribbles roll off the window, and clouds of warmth filter from the ground, a new sun rises out of the stormy sea, smiling triumphantly. Bird song fills the air with sweet, bouncing chirps, flying to the god of light that brightens the darkest corners. I greet this new day with joy, as I roll down the window, breathing in the fresh aroma of spring, filling me with freedom. Wind swishes through my hair, pulling it back, as we stream past the cemetery.

We will never forget, that summer day, when you lay in your grave, smiling and gay.


© Copyright 2017 Irish wolf hound. All rights reserved.

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