Look (200)

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Looking Up (this image is provided by Madison Woods, the original fabulous Fictioneer of Fridays)

The boy understood what it meant to look up.

And down, too.

He was a person who worked hard – when he remembered – and had profound thoughts – when he was caught off guard.

On Sunday mornings, he disappeared and though we looked, it was never until late, when he chose to reappear, that he would be found. I don’t know why I decided to follow him. Maybe I was tired of the gaze that saw everything but me.

So I followed him out, over the still-wet grass, past the bunkhouse and the willow-lined irrigation ditch turned creek bed. He pulled a bike from between bales and rode over the hill on tracks made by pick-ups and tractors. Out there, those tracks and haystack are reminders that we marked this place, that it is not wild, really.

I followed discreetly, though he probably knew all along I was there. We passed the pond and dipped down along the other side of it, and he disappeared into another stand of trees – quaking aspen, I thought, cottonwood. I waited.

He called me, then. Jules, come see!

I went; found him on his back, eyes on the brightening sky.

Look through the leaves, he said.

Photo Number 2, double inspiration.

For more stories prompted by these images, visit Madison Woods and explore the rest of the Friday Fictioneers! 

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20 responses »

  1. Lime, Lime, Lime,

    Karen nailed it when she picked the sentence that she liked most especially. And you nailed it with this brilliant little combo piece. I have chicken skin (Hawaiian goose bumps) from the last two lines. This is a story of yours that will stay with me for a long time.

    Aloha,

    Doug

    • Haha, thanks Doug!

      It occurred to me to do it this way because I so much liked last week’s picture, but I wanted to write a story that would relate to Mad’s son. Anyway, I’m just very happy it’s gone over well.

  2. I liked how you combined the two pictures into one story, it worked wonderfully. I also liked the line ‘the gaze that saw everything but me’. It said a lot in those few words!

      • Do you want a holiday themed prompt next week or are you asking if we’ll be writing during the holidays?

        Next week’s photo can be holiday themed. I’ll look around. But I doubt we’d get many participants if we did it on the Friday before Christmas.

        • I mean, I would love to do a holiday themed prompt next week, and pop it up to 200 words because I’m thinking of the xmas theme stories on This American Life, particularly David Sedaris… and wouldn’t that be fun to emulate? But maybe I’ll have to do one of my own. I’ll think about throwing out a prompt, too, but not on Friday (don’t worry, I’m no usurper). Will let you know.

          • Hahah, not to worry. There are lots of flash Friday things but the Friday Fictioneers has the best writers, imo 😉 You wouldn’t be ursurping to use the same day.

            I’m such a grinch it’s going to be another hard prompt for me, but I’ll try to come up with something. We’d best do it this upcoming week, though. I picked a string of bittersweet to decorate my kitchen yesterday…maybe the grinch is dissipating a little.

          • Of course Friday Fictioneers are the best 🙂

            I think I’d do something on Wednesday. Anyway, the hardest prompts always elicit the best stories, so that’ll be something to look forward to. A little grinch will be good.

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