THE HOLE by Marion Twyman

At first I thought it was a shadow, but as I got nearer, I realised it was a hole. Quite a big hole too, as holes come, about the size of a washing up bowl. It hadn’t been there a week ago, and there was no dirt and torn up grass round it that a digging animal would have made. Very curious. I approached it cautiously in case the ground was subsiding, I didn’t want to go down with it ! I walked through the old part of the cemetery every week when I visited my mum’s grave, and this hole was at the side of one of those old tombs that looked a bit like a mausoleum. I don’t know whose it was, time and lichen had obliterated all the engraved wording.
An elderly lady was coming towards me along the path. Dressed in black, she carried some bright yellow flowers. Although the sun shone, an icy wind had got up, and her loose coat was blowing around her.
“Hello” I said “Be careful how you go along here, it looks as if there might be some subsidence”. I pointed to the hole. “Mind you don’t fall in.”
“Thank you” she said, “I won’t.” She smiled, then said “What beautiful flowers, such a lovely colour”. I looked at the bunch of deep red dahlias I carried. “My mum’s favourites” I replied.
“And mine” she said quite wistfully. “But then I love all flowers. They brighten up a dark room so beautifully don’t they.”
We parted company and I went on to mum’s grave. I put last week’s dead flowers in the bin and replaced them with the new ones, then went to get some water. When I got back, the flowers had gone. My beautiful red dahlias were nowhere to be seen, just a couple of loose petals lay on the ground as evidence they had ever existed at all. I looked all round but there was no one in sight, not a solitary soul. I admit I shed a tear as I returned the water can, bemoaning the lack of respect nowadays, and
wondering who could have done something so despicable. I determined to report it at the lodge by the main gates, at the same time as I reported the hole.
I thought I’d better have another look at that hole, so I could describe it properly to the groundsman, I had been distracted talking to that old lady.
Do you know, I walked round that mausoleum-topped grave three times in bewilderment. There was no hole, nor sign of disturbed ground. Where it had been lay just a few petals, some yellow, some blood red.

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About highamwriters

A group of recreational creative writers and if you ask us nicely we will let you publish some of our work
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