Archive for May 3rd, 2012

3rd May
written by amber

Edvard Munch

On the dock, he was suddenly overcome with the horror of life itself. The seagulls, squabbling for fish offal, squawked harshly and to him epitomized an endless vicious struggle for survival.

Where once he had found the fisherman patient and reassuring in their timeless quest for a bite, now he saw their subterranean anxiety, their sidelong competitive glances, their exhaustion. The comical pelican was no longer the debonair gentleman in a shabby suit, sidling up to the successful fish-cleaners, pretending not to be greedy. Now his rapacious nature was revealed in his compulsive swallowing, his desperate dance.

And the waves. How could he have ever found them soothing? They passed across the surface of the sea like enormous shudders, trying to dislodge any boat or bird or even dock that stood in their way. Again and again and again they leaned against the wooden pillars, already weakened by long immersion and encrustations of barnacles, making the dock shake. Boom boom came the hollow sound of the unstoppable assault.

A reek of death floated up from the high tide line, mingling with the bright stink of fish guts and the penetrating odor of boat fuel.

His death was imminent, he knew. The large wave from his recurring dream was on the horizon.

He turned back toward the land, nearly paralysed with fear, his face contorted into an unheard rictus of a scream.

StoryADay’s hint today was to use Wickipedia’s news, in which I found a piece about the record price for The Scream at auction.

3rd May
written by amber

The Memory

She remembers her third birthday, the first one she can recall. The day was made memorable, not by cake and gifts, but by the argument her parents had over the present her father bought for her.

It was big and wrapped in pink shiny paper. Her father had come through the door carrying it, but before Adele could take it from him, her mother grabbed it and ran into the kitchen, slamming the door behind her.

Adele ran after and tried to open the door, but the knob would not turn. Years later, she realized her mother must have been holding the knob. Who would have a kitchen door which could be locked?

Yet the sound of tearing paper could be heard, heard with outrage by a small girl who knew that it was her gift being torn open.

Her mother must have held the knob with one hand while securing the large gift between her knees or with her feet while she tore at the paper with her other hand.

“Steve!” came her scream. “I forbade you!”

Adele knew all about being forbidden. She clutched at her father’s leg in sympathy. He took her hand and pulled her toward the couch. “You sit right here. I’m going to talk to your mother for a minute and then I’ll take you out for ice cream,” he said.

She sat there, and she heard the loud shouting, and maybe she heard the word ‘doll’ but she wasn’t sure. Then a door slammed and she heard her father’s car start up. She ran to the front door and saw him driving away, with what looked like a small girl with blonde hair sitting in the seat beside him.

Later, after the cake and ice cream and smaller gifts from her mother, her aunts and her grandparents, she was put to bed, but she distinctly remembers creeping downstairs and finding the pink paper and a very large empty box behind the freezer in the pantry.

She never saw her father again.

This is the second story with a StoryADay prompt – published a day late due to illness. This is the first time since May 1, 2011 that I’ve missed posting a story because of being sick. A couple were late due to lack of internet connection. Today I’m posting 2 stories to get caught up.