Do you know what it feels like to be drowning? Not to be able to catch your breathe? It feels like you’re a fish out of water. Flopping on the shoreline. Gasping. Choking. Even if you manage to wriggle your way back to water, it hurts to breathe. You can’t swim very powerfully.
It feels like it does when your beloved leaves you and you feel like you’ve been punched in the gut. You can’t catch your breath for a few seconds. Even when you finally do, it comes in short, hard gasps. You might take a few steps, but you grab at your stomach. Overcome with pain. Bending over as if that will help.
Some people are like wolves or bald eagles or penguins. They mate for life. If their mate is gone, they find their way alone. Lonely, but with their memories. Occasionally gasping for breath like the beached fish. You may see them walking along the beach and if they raise their head, you’ll see the pain shining out of their eyes.
Thanks to Priceless Joy and to Jodi McKinney for the photo prompt.
”I thought we came to the Beach Bar to have a drink and then go parasailing, Michael? We haven’t even made it to the bar. You captured me way out here,” Gale exclaimed.
”C’mon, honey. I’ve missed you all day,” Michael said as he tried to steal a few kisses.
”Later, Michael. I’m thirsty for a beer and I really want to do some parasailing this afternoon,” Gale said as she pushed against Michael’s chest.
She pushed away and Michael turned away. With his back to her, he said, “Honey, don’t you love me?”
”Michael, don’t you even use that line on me,” Gale said.
Michael turned around grinning and grabbed her, kissing her again.
”Do we really have to go parasailing today, Gale? Let’s have one beer and then go to my apartment.”
”I know when I’ve lost an argument,” she said and started walked toward the bar.
Michael didn’t know that, once she made it to the bar, she wasn’t going anywhere with him after this.
Thanks to Priceless Joy and Michelle DeAngelis for the photo prompt.
A comment. Seagulls remind me of my mother. Even though most people see them as the birds who clean up garbage on the beach, my mother saw their beauty. When I was a very young adult, she showed me their beauty in the series of short stories published by Richard Bach about a seagull who seeks life outside the typical and flies off to seek self-actualization.
Our family took a trip shortly after that to Isle Royale National Park in the northern part of Lake Superior in Michigan. A seagull spent the week we were there sitting on the window seal of my mother’s motel room. No one else’s room. Just her’s. It was the time she was heavy into reading the “Jonathan” stories and books. Coincidence? Perhaps. I’ll let you decide.
I read the Jonathan stories even now. They help a non-conformist like me. Try them on for yourself! You can read about them here,
Thank you Priceless Joy for the wonderful prompt!
Photo Credit to wildverbs
He had warned him. He had told him he had a short time to get the hell out of his sight. To get away from the apartment. He watched him walk along, slouching, slowly. He felt like he was mocking him. If he didn’t disappear from view soon, he would go down there and make him disappear. He would be sure he never hurt anyone again.
That miserable man had hurt his sister. Not physically, but in a worse way. He had figured out she came from money and had conned her out of some of her inheritance before he figured out what was going on. When he confronted his sister and insisted she cut off the money and see if he still stayed with her, his romantic fervor started to die.
Finally, he found him at her apartment, trying to twist her arm for money. He sent him on his way and gave him a time limit. As he watched him, he glanced at his watch and knew his time was almost up.
*Photo Credit to Enisa
Ray was drunk. He had to leave his car and walk the country road home from the bar tonight. He smelled the sweet smell of the pasture. He just wanted to lie down. Pass out really. He staggered off the road into the pasture, tumbled down the hill, and was asleep before he hit the bottom.
Dawn woke him. Rather, it tried to wake him as he viewed the light with bleary eyes and shut them again. He realized he wasn’t sober yet. He wanted to sleep it off. The sun started to get warm. Two hours later, it was hot. Ray awoke again, still not completely sober. He decided to get up and make his way to the house.
He opened his eyes as he stood. When he looked up, he screamed. There were strange-looking people working the pasture. They had no faces and hay bales for heads. They were seven feet tall.
Ray turned and ran toward the house, vowing all the way never to drink again.
Photo credit to Ellspeth
As she stood on the pier and watched the sunset, tears streamed down her face. She had finally done it. She had put her house in her hometown up for sale today. It had been hard but necessary. Her family was gone. She still had friends there, but she had been gone a long time and they had moved on. She had as well.
It was time to physically move on. To a place that she loved. To a new start. To somewhere she didn’t feel the loss of her family so deeply. To where she could possibly forget…..certain things. She hoped her house would sell while she was here for the winter. She didn’t want to go back there again. She would hire someone to pack and move her.
She hoped she was entering a new chapter of her life. A different life. Someone here on the island had said to her, “We’re all hiding from something.” She knew what he meant. But, what she was hiding from was in her own head.
Dr. Michael Hurst and his team of students, from Harvard University, studying archeology and anthropology had been called in to study the rock face of a cliff in New Mexico. A new set of petroglyphs had been discovered.
”Petroglyphs are usually pictorial stories carved into rock faces by the Pueblo Native Americans who lived in this area,” Dr. Hurst explained to his students. “This small set of petroglyphs has just been found. The theory is that they are Navajo in origin.”
”Dr. Hurst, what do these petroglyphs mean?” asked one student.
”Jack, they are difficult to interpret. We’ve been able to interpret some of the most common. I’m not an expert, but the one of the left represents a person. The one on the right is more of a mystery to me. The two symbols together say that a person is doing something. Our job is to figure out what by interpreting the petroglyphs. It’s time to get to work!”
He didn’t leave the cool confines of his apartment very often. There, he was safe. Safe from from the broiling sun of the equatorial city. Safe from the cacophony of noise that assailed his ears when he opened the door of the hotel. Safe, most of all, from the germs that he could feel penetrating his skin when he wasn’t in the filtered air in his suite. An assault on his senses.
What he was in search of today couldn’t be delivered. He smiled to himself. It could be delivered but refused to be. He walked several blocks through the city. As he walked, he became less aware of those things that assaulted his senses and more aware at the prize at the end of his journey. Ahead of his, he saw the hotel that was his destination. He stopped and gathered his composure.
He walked into the hotel bar. He saw her immediately. His daughter, waiting for him, for the first time in twenty years.
Photo credit to dorothy
“Why is the stupid door pink instead of red,” Katrina mumbled to herself. She had just rented a room in the famous red light district in Amsterdam. An American girl in Amsterdam. No money, no way to get home, no job. It was just sex. She scratched a smiley face on the door and went inside.
It wasn’t bad. There were new linens. She had heard that putting a bowl of pasta puttanesca out drew in clients. A knock at the door. Her first client. He took one look at her and said, “Let me help you get home.”
When they were children, they would lie on the bank of the river and watch the barges and boats as they passed by. It was a game to count them. A way to fill their lonely existence at home. They only had each other as playmates.
As teenagers, they started feeling romantic feelings for each other as they watched those boats pass by. They held hands. They chased each other along trails by the river. They pitched a tent and spent the night by the river, but in separate sleeping bags. They listened to the lonely horns of the boats sound their song.
Finally, they parted. She was older and went off to college. He missed her, but there was nothing he could do. It was many years before they saw each other again. When they did, at her mother’s funeral, the old magic was still there.
They walked back down to the river after the funeral. She didn’t know he’d thought of her every day. They clasped hands, heard the horns, and knew.
Photo Credit to Barb CT