The Last Hike – a story for the Friday Fictioneers

 

The amazing Rochelle at http://www.rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com organises photo prompts and links for the Friday Fictioneers. Authors write a piece of 100 word fiction, prose or poetry based on a photo prompt and exchange comments on each other’s work.  If you are a writer of short fiction, join our group and let your imagination feed us with your stories. 

Hi fellow writers. I’m back! After weeks of chaos, I finally have time to return to my writing. Sorry if this is too sad for you but this story would not stay silent in my head. Hopefully, my sense of humour will return with the next one.

 

Photo Prompt © Danny Boweman

Even his hand had shrunk, wasted over the months.

Once upon a time, his fingers wrapped around mine, protecting me so that I thought no one could hurt me. What did I know? Poison was taking him from me; rogue cells which searched until they found harbour in his organs.

Fight poison with poison, they told us. We hoped for a while and then, that optimism also wasted away.

The mountain has been too steep and soon, my darling will be a memory and I will be left floundering in a wasteland, tumbling like a weed through the lonely years.

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61 Comments

Filed under Flash Fiction

61 responses to “The Last Hike – a story for the Friday Fictioneers

  1. Dear Lindy,

    Good to see you back, girl! Exquisite use of the prompt. Fighting poison with poison. You didn’t have to spell it out. This left an ache in my heart.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

  2. Very sad and nice use of the photo.

  3. “poison with poison” is a graphic way of putting it. Well done.

    • Chemotherapy has been described as poison by those I love who have been on the receiving end and so that word seemed appropriate. And as an ex-nurse, I tend to think with that kind of mind. Thank you for reading and your feedback.

  4. Tragic and poignant. Well done.

  5. Yeah, I’m really seeing a stark picture here. It’s quite jarring, but poignant. Well done!

  6. The struggle with illness and death is a great metaphor used beautifully. I could feel the pain.

  7. My Dad died of cancer. He wanted to be cremated. His ashes are in the desert near a lake.

  8. Sad, but WOW what a way of writing it. You described grief so perfectly with your last sentence. ‘tumbling through a wasteland”…yep, that’s perfect!

    • We all dig in to our own experiences to draw out the emotional descriptions and I tried to do that with this piece. Your comments are appreciated.

      • In my culture, within some of the Western tribes, it is common practice to remove oneself from the community and hike out to die thus protecting the community from bad spirits that like to follow the dead. It’s not my personal belief, but I do understand it.

      • That is fascinating to know. Thank you for sharing it with me. My father always said that the energy within the human can not die and I guess if it’s the bad stuff, you wouldn’t want it around!

  9. Such a wrenching metaphor. Well done!

  10. Yes, a sad but touching story. Unfortunately many of us have dealt with this. Well done.

  11. Such a sad story… but so well written… I always admire a skillful metaphor, and you have used them well.

  12. What a sad story. “Even his hand had shrunk…” What a graphic way of telling us how his devastating physical changes hurt her emotionally.

    • Thank you Penny. I based this image on the memory of holding my dad’s hand during his final days and then later, my husband’s when he was seriously ill. Sometimes, that is the only comfort we can give.

  13. Life Lessons of a Dog Lover

    Beautifully written piece. I love the start of the line “once upon a time” you just knew what was going to follow was not pleasant. You handled a difficult story with skill a that left me sad but not depressed.

  14. Your writing almost echoes mine and strikes a chord. You will see why when you read mine!

  15. The feeling of grief and sorrow is palpable through your words. Excellent.

    Click to read my FriFic

  16. Very sad and beautifully written. I know too many people lately who are trying to deal with the second poison and failing. Heartbreaking.

  17. Awww……so sad. You’ve captured a moment of deep grief so beautifully. Well done. :o)

  18. Beautifully and evocatively penned – I felt every bit of her anguish.

  19. Oh, my heart! This is all to real, and so very sad.

    • All of us writers use our life experiences for emotional depth, don’t we and unfortunately, I have years of experience to draw upon. Thank you for reading my story and commenting.

  20. Dale

    Heartbreakingly beautifully told… One so hopes they will find a better way than to use poison to fight this poison…

  21. So tragic and well described. Beautifully done

  22. So sad and yet so well written!

  23. Wecome back, Lindy. I really loved your take and found it so poigant and significant. While losing a loved one is guttering, there’s also this intensity where every heartbeat matters and there’s that peace and stillness. We had a family vigil when my grandmother died and we sat around her bed and my cousin played “The Swan” on her cello. My aunt combed her hair with a very simple tortoiseshell comb. It was a beautiful,treasured time.
    No doubt you’ve experienced this yourself.
    xx Rowena

    • Thank you Rowena for your lovely comments on The Last Hike. You are right in assuming that I have sat with a loved one in his final hours. I also sat with my husband while he was fighting a life threatening illness and based my words on my feelings during that time. Fortunately he recovered so my own story’s ending was happier. It certainly sounds as though your grandmother was surrounded by a loving family at her end.

      • Lindy, so good to here your husband recovered. These times are so difficult and just because we pull through, doesn’t negate the hell we’ve travelled through. One of the Mum’s from my daughter’s class has been admitted to hospital in Sydney, about two hours from home, and the doctors don’t know what’s going on and she’s having serious vision loss. I’ve been through similar myself and the anguish is intense. I told her about the chaplains and what we know as the Pink Ladies. Nurses also do such a fantastic job caring for the mind and soul as well as the body!
        xx Rowena

  24. Sad but true for once this deadly disease catches one is just helpless.

  25. “Fight poison with poison”: that is what it is in a nutshell.

  26. Well done. You see the mood – desolate – perfectly.

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