This week's words at The Sunday Whirl are:-
stutter, cliff, rickety, bones, cart, absence,rift, flight, longing, sustain, baffles, language
A lone figure hobbled up the grassy slope towards the edge of the white chalk cliff. A pathetic sight; thin, hunched and draped in torn, worn grubby clothes. With stick-like arms he dragged a rickety cart, almost empty, his worldly possessions. He trudged closer and closer to edge, stuttering and babbling in another language. He stopped inches from the sheer drop. Hundreds of feet below the frothing waves crashed over the rocks, beckoning him, tempting him to join them.
He sat to relieve his aching bones. All around squawking gulls swooped and dived. He watched wishing that he too had the gift of flight and was able to launch his soul skyward and look down on what he had become. Perhaps I can he thought. Perhaps I can.
He stared out across the pale blue ocean. There on the distant horizon, he could just make out the beaches of his beloved France. Pierre came here from France long long ago. In the early years he had a good life, a new family. But not a real family. And since everyone and everything that had mattered drifted away, a deep longing had grown inside him to return to the land of his fathers. But he was stubborn. For so many years he refused to mend the rift between him and his true family. They knew not why. His choice of sustained absence and isolation still baffles them.
Today, at the cliffs edge sits a little wooden cart wheel. Between the rotting spokes French marigolds grow, their golden blossoms gazing out towards the coast of France. That little wheel is all that remains of Pierre. Somebody brought it up from the rocks below, perhaps someone who knew Pierre once; once upon a happier time.
Picture Beachy Head, Eastbourne. c.keithsramblings
Footnote: I live close to Beachy Head but sadly its beauty is overshadowed by its notoriety as a venue for scores of people each year from all over the UK wishing to bid the world farewell.