Lily Harlin

United States

I Saw a Red Rose on the Sidewalk

June 7, 2018

PROMPT: Child Narrator

     I saw a red rose on the sidewalk. It must have fallen from one of the bunches of flowers that Richard had bought for the funeral. Richard is my father. In all my life I had never seen him cry. Not once. And I was all of six, so I had known him quite some time.

  Daddy, Richard. He was a good man. Or at least that was what Mrs. Andy said. Andy is Daddy’s secretary. She is so pretty. Prettier than mommy. Prettier than Mommy was.

  I loved my Mommy. But she made Daddy cry. I don't like it when my strong Daddy cries. He is supposed to be the happy one now, but he is still sad all the time. My brother Jim said I’m too little to understand. But I am not to little. I know what happened. I was there.

  Daddy was with Andy. He told me to stay with Mommy. He said he and Andy had a surprise for Mommy, and I wasn’t allowed to tell Mommy that Daddy was with Andy. I said okay, but I didn’t like surprises.

  Mommy was watching me and Jim at home. She kept asking where Richard was. I really wanted to tell her. But Daddy would be mad. So I had to keep my mouth closed with my hands. Mommy told me living was bad. It was. 

  After I told Mommy, she got really upset. I guess she really liked surprises, and she must have been mad at me that I told her. I yelled. 

“Why did you ask me if you were just going to to be mad when I told you?” I said

But Mommy just cried more. She went in her room. Then there was a loud noise. After that, I never saw Mommy again. 

When Daddy got home, he was mad. But he was crying too. He was mad at me. I made Daddy mad, but Mommy made him sad. Andy was there too. And Jim was glaring at Andy. What did Andy do?

Later. A few days later. I saw a red rose on the sidewalk. Daddy must have dropped it.
I enjoy writing in dark perspective but giving it a smiley twist. Using words like pretty, surprise, roses. It gives it the happy in a dark situation. A child would notice bright things, not twisted ones. A child would see flowers, but wonder at the gun shot in Mommy's room.


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  • June 7, 2018 - 12:09pm (Now Viewing)

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1 Comment
  • ALangford

    This is really cleverly composed & very gripping, well done!!

    over 2 years ago