Wait For The Light

Photo prompt: Dale Rogerson

 

“Can we go to the playground, Mama?”

The woman stroked the small forehead to compose herself and smiled into the over-bright eyes. “It is the middle of the night, Cara.”

“Can I see?”

The woman tucked the blankets under the child and lifted her. The bundle in her arms felt devastatingly like the infant Cara had been a handful of winters ago, and heartbreakingly almost as light again. She turned so her daughter faced the window.

“It’s dark,” the girl sighed. “I’m tired, Mama. Maybe I wait for the light?”

“Yes, Cara,” the mother whispered. “We wait for the light.”

 

 

 

For Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers

 

 

 

Blend In

Photo: Sue Vincent

 

They walked toward the light. The brambles, the thistles, the burrs, the thorns — all attempted to snag and ensnare and scratch and mark them for what would be held as treachery.

Still, they walked. Some of them bare-legged and bleeding. Others somewhat better clothed, but not much better off once flaps of torn fabric opened windows to the ravages of all manner of sharp things.

They walked toward the light. The dark, the fog, the cold, the hunger, the fatigue — all conspired to force them to turn back.

They did not.

Not when the tunnel they had managed digging, spoonful by spoonful of rock-hard soil, hiding the scrabbling sounds under the cover of endless mandatory chanting, could finally accommodate a slithery passage underneath the electrified fence.

They’d been digging it for months.

Waiting. Counting. Hoping. Dreaming. Fighting against those who dismissed the possibility, against those who threatened to give them away, against the weighing down by those who’d surrendered to messages of futility and given up.

It had been a fluke, really. A careless corner of a printed flyer that the wardens did not burn completely. A few lines and enough to give them the potential for a plan.

But they had to destroy the evidence. And not everyone believed.

Sometime even they began having doubts.

When the light arrived, many of them cried. Surreptitiously, of course. Lest the guards see. Lest they be found out.

And when the cold bit deep enough to keep the guards huddled by the watch-station’s stoves, and when the hour was late enough for no more chants to be required, they wriggled, one by one, under and out.

And fled.

Toward the light.

Where the masses congregating in the desert could swallow them. Where they would be hidden in the flocks of floodlighted extras dressed in rags. Where their dust and grime and hollows under eyes, would blend in with the crowds in caked-in dirt and post-apocalyptic make up. Where their actual horror, worse than any movie, could be made less real at last.

 

 

For Sue Vincent’s WritePhoto Challenge

 

 

In The Blackest Night

hongmei-zhao-tcxmxmnj-SI-unsplash

Photo: Hongmei Zhao on Unsplash

 

In the blackest night

She woke

To hear the flutter of her

Heart

Singing melodies of courage

In her ears.

As the hours ticked

Long seconds full of

Ink,

And stretched worries

She had long learned how to

Blink,

She held on to

Wisps of memories

Mirrored in her unshed

Tears,

And recalled the echoes

Of abandon

In the giggles

Of her very early

Years.

 

 

For the dVerse Poetics challenge: Black

 

 

In The Elements

Nail it AmitaiAsif

Photo: Amitai Asif

 

Blessed be the heat

Of fire

Fed by wood

That held on

To the driven strength of home.

Let air

Breathe through

The flames

That will allow warmth

To the water

While the earth

Hammocks your body

And your eyes

Address heaven’s stairs.

 

 

 

For the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Five Elements

 

 

The Long Night

burial cave israel

Photo: Amitai Asif

 

The long night arrives

Wrapped in ends

Of dreams

And threads of hopes.

A tapestry

Of what may come

Therein,

As unfettered souls

Are finally free

To roam

Within.

Where darkness

Becomes its own

Light,

That holds

No more an actual

Night.

 

 

 

Note: The photo depicts an ancient burial cave in Israel

For the Tuesday Photo Challenge: Night

 

Through The Night

nailed amitaiasif

Photo: Amitai Asif

 

They gazed forlorn

Into the light,

Into the lumber

Burning bright.

All that they’d known

Before this plight,

Now kept them warm

Through heartache’s night.

 

 

For Sunday Stills: Night

*Dedicated to all who’d lost homes, lives, memories, and loved ones in fires and other disasters.

 

The Long Ride

TLTweek151 photo by Harpal Singh via Unsplash

Photo: Harpal Singh via Unsplash

 

They rode long through the dark

After closing the park

Wooden horses a-spiral in endless embark.

 

 

For the Three Line Tales Challenge

 

Late Dance

dance OsnatHalperinBarlev

Photo: Rega’im Menatzhim

 

Things were winding down. Most tables had been cleared and many guests had left for home. Only the hardiest (or closest kin) still remained. Sated and a bit deflated with fatigue, they lounged, gossiped, tapped phones, and not-so-surreptitiously checked the time. Several small children slept on makeshift cots of pulled together chairs.

Music still played but with more inertia than conviction.

The celebration was officially over, though not for everyone: two boys, oblivious to the late hour and overall exhaustion, danced on.

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: Celebration (82 words)

 

Night Light

nightlight1 AmitaiAsif

Photo: Amitai Asif

 

“Almost there!” she sighed.

What had been an orange halo of illumination at the horizon of their climb finally crystalized into evidence of habitation.

She could hear Merri’s labored breath behind her.

“Not long now,” she cajoled to mask her wariness.

Will they be welcomed or will they be turned out again? The other two places were small towns. This was a big city. Perhaps they could blend in. Hide in plain sight.

 

 

For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt: Illumination in 73 words

 

Night Light

HongKong InbarAsif

Photo: Inbar Asif

 

Dancing light on the water

A bright night in the bay

Turning shimmering rainbows

To melted ink on display.

 

For the Wits End Photo Challenge: Nightlife