Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Entry #70

Maggie May I?
by Anna Lenardson


Maggie leaned against the sink and shut her eyes against the darkness. Imprinted on the lids she saw the negative image of the lone tree on the hill outside her farmhouse window that had been illuminated by the flash of lightning seconds before. "Alone, like me," she thought.

Only the tree stood strong, complete. For twenty years she'd watched it grow, imagining a swing beneath its branches, imagining the face of her curly headed little girl, imagining her laughing brown eyes . . .

The atmosphere was heavy with expectancy and far off flashes of lightning made promises that the night would fulfill.

Maggie too was waiting, but for what, she didn't know. It had been two decades since Jason had left her, taking her baby girl and clearing out. And she didn't expect him back. Not really. Not that she blamed him.

"O God", she cried, "How long do I have to pay for my mistakes?"

She wished she was brave enough to end it ... or hopeful enough to keep going.

Another flash made her jump and she heard a rapping on the door. Surprised, she dried her hands on a towel and made a quick, furtive swipe at her eyes as she walked toward the door. She flipped on the light and lifted the corner of the lace curtain that covered the four-paned window. She looked down into an upturned face with laughing brown eyes and her eyes swam as she fumbled with the lock.

Are you Maggie Saunders?” said the young woman standing on the porch. “May I come in?

14 comments:

paisley said...

you just never know ... do you????

JaneyV said...

I wonder what she did that was so bad? I'm glad her daughter found her.

The storm as a portent for change was a wonderful device - terrifying and uncertain yet cleansing and thrilling, just like the reunion.

Nice writing!

Absolute Vanilla (& Atyllah) said...

What a beautifully poignant piece of writing. Really lovely.

Beth said...

I'm also glad for the happy ending.

Marcia (MeeAugraphie) said...

Heartwarming story.

Sarah Hina said...

Beautiful agony, and reconciliation. I love the imagery of the tree as a "negative image" illuminated by the lightning.

Poignant writing. I'm so glad it ended happily.

Aerin said...

Peace at the end of the storm - nice.

Gnewvegan said...

A story that can give hope to a sad womans heart.

bekbek said...

This is lovely, Anna. It is sweetly handled - you never had to explain anything, just let it play out for us, and there is no doubt of the identity of the visitor and the shift to warmth and something good in this woman's life.

SzélsőFa said...

I like how the elements of Nature were used throughout.

Rob said...

Using the tree as an image of what could have been, imagining a swing hanging from its branches, was a nice touch. Good job!

bluesugarpoet said...

"The atmosphere was heavy with expectancy and far off flashes of lightning made promises that the night would fulfill." Nice piece of foreshadowing with that line -I like the subtlety.

jason evans said...

Great use of weather to foreshadow the pain of this past and the turning point. Interesting use of lightning and afterimages. High marks!

Aine said...

So heartwarming.. mother and daughter can reclaim what was taken from them.

It appears universal for a mother to find meaning in the view from the kitchen window. I like how she used the tree to mark the passing time and growth of her daugther.