Saturday 4 June 2022

Morning has Broken.

The rain started at midnight; soft at first with no hint of the thunder rumble and lightning to come. Mary lay in her bed, listening to the first drops as they hit the tin roof of the summer-shack her father had built years before the first rains. The fresh hope of the earth rose in celebration and she breathed in deeply to savour its scent; the year had been arid and the ground was cracked and broken. And then the thunder roared.


Rain started to fall as if it was inpatient and the earth sighed in acceptance, then gave way, accepted itself as mud and flowed through the forgotten channels  of what was once the orchard, a single tree still standing thirstily acknowledged its own deliverance and once again promised to bear fruit.




If she had known, Mary would have remembered the last pear she had eaten, a gift on her eighteen birthday but instead she pulled the cover closer and watched the black and white flashes as the night - for a moment - vanished and the day - for even less - betrayed its absence. This was not the first time she had felt a little afraid.


When her father died and left her alone.


When the rains had stopped.


When the trees fell.


What if it happened again? 


Her farther had built the summer-shack directly beneath the oak, it had been young and strong at the time but now it was as old as memory and the main branch was cracked. Fairy lights were hanging from that branch, and now in the storm it felt like a folly that she had chosen to add further burden to its ageing limb.


‘Please don’t fall’, she whispered, ‘but if you do, fall on me and finish this’.


The storm was making her sad, so she turned onto her side and closed her eyes. She tried not to think of the pain in her leg that objected to her turning and she tried not to think of what the morning would bring. Instead, she let the drumming rain obliterate all thought until, finally, she slept.


The tree did not fall.


The rain stopped.


The morning offered her a new day.

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