Writing 101 – day nine – Changing viewpoints

Posted: June 12, 2014 in Writing 101

Before you read my blog, here is the summary of expectation:
To write a scene in a park with an old woman knitting and a man and a woman holding hands. The man begins to cry. The scene is to be written from 3 viewpoints: The man, the woman and the old lady.

I was holding her hand.

Albeit lightly.

It was a façade.

Holding hands was something I now enjoyed with someone else. Someone new. Someone who I don’t look at every day in a negative way because of something she did. My wife took my hand a few minutes ago as she whispered that she loved me into my ear. I knew she yearned to hear those 3 words back, but I couldn’t bring myself to say it. It wasn’t true. I loved someone else. The reason why though was the important factor here.

The park was peaceful. It wasn’t especially early, but for some reason the laughter and play of children wasn’t plaguing my ears. That’s what I hated about the park. Ever since Charlie…

I was holding his hand. I held it tightly hoping to spark something into him. Something which had been missing for a long time. I reached for it a couple of minutes ago. As I reached, my heart was racing. We hadn’t so much as touched in weeks, months even. I whispered to him that I loved him, and I waited.

And waited.

We continued our stroll, but he remained tight lipped, and his hand didn’t hold its curve in mine. It fell limply. I know one day soon he’s going to tell me that it’s over. I wonder if he has met someone else who can make him happy. Who doesn’t remind him of the horror every time he sees her. We both miss Charlie. It hasn’t been the same between my husband and I since Charlie left us…

I enjoy the park at this time on a summer’s day. The children don’t seem to hit the park hard until mid-morning, so I can happily knit away with my thoughts. I was making a sweater for my grandson. Red. He loves football, so I was making it with his team’s logo. I looked up and to my right. I saw a young couple walking towards me. Still some way away from my location but edging closer all the time. They were strolling hand in hand and the woman leant across to the man, and it looked like she kissed him on the cheek. They were getting closer all the time. They looked sweet together.

Why has she brought me to the park? Why does she think me seeing a load of children is going to make me fine again? I’m not fine again, and I never will be.

 

Maybe I shouldn’t have brought him here. Why am I such a fool? He’s going to see laughing, smiling children having fun with their parents. He’ll never be ready.

 

As the couple got closer I could see a look in the man’s eye. They weren’t sweet together. There was something straining at them. I could see it.

Sadness in the eyes and body.

This was the final straw. I couldn’t do this anymore. I saw an elderly lady knitting something red just ahead. I couldn’t hold it back anymore. I stopped, removed my hand from my wife’s and turned to face her. She didn’t look at me. She knew what was coming. I took a deep breath… Tears welled up in my eyes… My body drooped…

Suddenly he stopped and snatched his hand away from mine. I couldn’t look at him. I fixed my attention on an old woman sitting on a bench just ahead of us. She was knitting something red. That was my focus.

 

Suddenly, the pair stopped, and he removed his hand from hers. He turned to face her, but she just looked at me.

“You killed my boy.” I just spurted it out. “You killed my boy!” I repeated louder. I burst into tears. I had bottled that up for the past eight months. “You took him swimming. Why didn’t you get in with him? Why did you leave him unsupervised? You killed my boy!” I broke down. I collapsed on the ground. “I can’t be with you anymore.” I looked up and she was still looking towards the old woman, but tears were streaming down her face. “Every day I wake up after my nightmares and see you. You remind me of the pain and despair.”

He came out with a statement that made my stomach flip. He told me I killed my boy. Then, he shouted it. I know he’s been bottling that up for the past few months. The worst thing is, is that he’s right. I shouldn’t have left him alone. I should have been in the pool with him. But…I wasn’t. He asked me these questions. The questions I’d been chastising myself for every day and night since it happened. He blames me and rightly so. He told me he couldn’t be with me any longer. I knew it was coming. I couldn’t look at him. I just had to focus on the old woman. I know I was crying, but how dare I cry. I am his pain and despair. I am my own pain and despair.

He said something to her. I couldn’t quite make it out. Then, he shouted it. Oh my word. What had happened? So much sadness from him. Something about a swimming accident. The man fell to the floor and sobbed. He looked up at the woman and told her he couldn’t be with her anymore and that she was his pain. Oh my word. This was horrendous. All the while, the woman just looked at me with tears rolling down her face. I cried at their sorrow.

I stood up and looked at my wife. She still held her stare towards the old woman. I turned on my heels. I couldn’t be here with her. I couldn’t be here in this park. I couldn’t be with her any longer. I walked away thinking about Charlie.

 

He stood up. I continued looking at the old lady, who was crying a silent cry just as I was. I felt him staring at me briefly. He turned and walked away. I was sure he had gone out of my life forever. He shouldn’t be in this park. He shouldn’t be with me. I destroyed his life. I took away his Charlie. I sank to my knees.

 

I watched as he got up and stared at the woman. She continued to look at me. After a few seconds, he rose and turned away. He trudged off with sunken shoulders. The woman fell to her knees. I stood up and walked over to the woman. I held her, and we cried together. She told me the story of what had happened.

To Charlie.

To his dad.

To his mum.

……………………………………………

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Comments
  1. Be Inspired says:

    so emotionally beautiful

  2. JustDeb says:

    I really liked this and liked that you did not give it a happy ending. Great post!

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