The Short Humour Site

Home : Writers' Showcase : Submission Guidelines : A Man of a Few More Words : Links

Writers' Showcase

The Peaceful Walk
by Ian Curtress

He had started out early to make the most of what promised to be a hot day.
He felt fresh and ready for the long walk ahead of him, a walk he had not planned but he somehow knew he must complete.
The first part was very familiar to him, bringing back memories of the first real walk he had taken with his Wife to be.
More years than he wanted to remember.
How he misses her. Two long years since she had passed away. As if it were yesterday.
The air was so cool and fresh he knew he would complete the walk.

That avenue of trees he had always marvelled at looked even more impressive.
He imagined them watching over him like old friends. Well he had known them a long time. The oak over there had their initials carved on it.
Hoped they survive for others to wonder
That old barn in the field on the hill. It had been a broken icon as long as he could remember. Please don’t restore it.
It was after around ten miles he stopped for a rest.
Remembered the hollow tree trunk at the edge of that copse where the two littles ones had played.
Little ones! Look at them now. Grown up with little ones of their own.
Took a drink of water and smiled to himself. Would this be the last big walk he would make on his own.
Looked forward to the lake just eight miles ahead.
They loved that. Skimming stones. Pretending he couldn’t do it to make them laugh. How great it would be to have just one more hour as it was then.

And there it was, as inviting as ever. A seat had been placed in an ideal position I wonder who was thoughtful enough to do that he pondered.
There was a welcome breeze coming off the water and he decided to have a sandwich. He could have so easily fallen asleep but knew he mustn’t.
However, it was an hour before he continued his walk. Legs reminding him of age.

Good timing, poppy field at its best
What is it about poppies that have that special charm. Individually they are pretty but en masse they are spectacular.
There seemed not to be an inch between them this year. He paused to enjoy.
Remembered that lovely picture he took of June, his Wife, in the middle of them.
Must press on he said, the next three miles are quite hilly and legs already feeling heavy.

The peak was a wonderful viewpoint.
The two benches had been there as long as he could remember. He scanned the horizon to find anything new.
A small housing estate didn’t sit right somehow but would no doubt improve with maturity. His mind rambled over their first house, sorry, flat. Looking back he could see why they were so affectionate, couldn’t get away from each other.
Smiled to himself. Finding out about each other, magic times.
Then the family home they made in their roomy cottage. The walls gave off an aura of happiness and contentment by a family blessed with love and care.

The path now had changed from the usual one and his footing a little unsure.
He walked cautiously for about a mile, and although never having walked this path, he felt comfortable.
The path seemed to know where it was going he chuckled to himself. Strangely, he seemed to be walking more easily although obviously tired.
He hoped he wasn’t becoming dehydrated as he thought for a moment his hand was suddenly in his Wifes reassuring clasp.
Almost real. Had a long drink.

Now he really had to accept he was fatigued and was aware of the need for a quiet rest. He was approaching a picture postcard village and was relieved.
He hoped he wasn’t lightheaded but all was cool, soft, peaceful but deserted
Then walking into the small flower filled square, a fountain sparkling in the sunlight, he noticed an elderly man sitting on beautifully carved bench.
Approaching him he asked, I have walked so many miles today can you tell me where I might find a bed to rest my head?
The grey haired gentleman looked up with a kindly smile and said I’m afraid I cannot help you as I have just arrived
I too am dead.