Tuesday, July 31, 2012

These Walls

 The old house had been loved. Not recently, of course, but it had known the feeling of a warm and loving family within its walls. It knew the miracle of a child coming into the world and the wonderful growing pains that happened throughout a child's life. It knew the slow-burning glow of true love and the bittersweet tang of growing old together. It grew old with its residents and now they had outgrown it completely.

Now the house knew how annoying small animals and pests could be. Humans mostly kept those out. It knew what the wind felt like, sweeping through its cracks and empty windows. Its wood expanded and contracted with the seasons, the tin roof rusted, but the old house remained standing. It was a silent testament to the vagaries of life.

It had always been a small town, where the house was. People farmed for a living and once the drought hit - the long, merciless drought - many people gave up. His last family lingered on for a while. They tried to pick up other odd jobs to make a living, but the world kept on leaving them behind. Better opportunities existed far beyond this corner of the world.

The house remained after everything else. The land recovered, there were large farms beyond its borders, but nobody needed it now. The house aged and sagged and played host to a menagerie of beasts. It was complacent with this teeming un-life it had.

And now, a small ray of sunshine lit up the house. A man by himself, tramping through the grass, had found it. The house knew it was uninhabitable but being noticed, being liked in its own way, was a small consolation. A picture made the house immortal - the house knew this from old pictures on its wall. This was something to hold on to.

This short piece was inspired by a prompt on Good Reads.

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