Angela and Galit gave us the prompt this week. Write a short fiction or non-fiction piece inspired by any or all of the photo above. Word limit: 400 words
Early morning sunlight prickled the dark space, finding its way through the tiniest of spaces. Tia sat silent on the edge of the bed. The loneliness of morning sat heavy on her shoulders. The smell of coffee slipped from the kitchen and into her consciousness. Single coffee cup sat on the table. No idle chat of weather and politics before work. No kiss on the cheek bidding farewell or to hang onto through the day.
The two year anniversary of loss was approaching, but the freshness of grief still came in waves.
With patterned motion she readies herself and moves into a day of work.
Lesson plans, emails and phone calls to parents fill her morning. Her intern for the quarter comes in with that all-to-eager-to-teach smile he wears. They prepare for the day and exchange plans, ideas and a behavior plan for the student who continues to get everyone’s attention.
At lunch a friend leans over with a whisper
Who’s the guy?
Tia answers simply without deliberation. She finishes up lunch, and continues in movements without much thought or inspiration through her day.
Before he leaves he hands her an envelope of photos taken by his professor, thinking she too may enjoy.
Later when her papers have been recorded and graded, and emails all handled or deleted… she looks at her purse on the chair. She thinks of the drive home, and the empty apartment. The silence of solitude seems to be all that will be waiting. Not ready yet to go home and face her emotion, she opens the photos he shared.
She shuffles through and then on one she stops. She can’t help but stare.
A photo of her…looking at him.
She recognizes that glint in her eye. She remembers the smile on those lips…
She can hear the catching of her own breath.
Feels the wings of hope just barely fluttering in her heart.
What had she been missing? Walked by, sat with, yet never aware.
Exposed in this photo.
Tomorrow she thought; things might be different. Like slipping into the 3d glasses at the theater, images around her suddenly coming to life.
No longer hidden behind grief and pain, exposed and awake to the living.