Paper Dreams

Posted: January 9, 2019 in Friday Fictioneers
Tags: , , , ,

Wednesday/Friday is here again. Thanks, Rochelle, for posting such a pretty picture provided by Priya Bajpal. My stab at writing a 100-word story follows.

photo by Priya Bajpal

They suggested Anya write wishes on paper and put them in a jar
saying this small action would provide hope.
Selecting the color and texture of the paper
was more difficult than knowing her wishes.
Food. Water. Freedom from pain.
Small comforts. Clean sheets. Crisp gowns.

Every day Anya slipped a wish into her crystalline jar
then nestled a polished shell on top
because Father told her shells carried
luck within their curls and swales.

Skeleton thin, and calling
for water, water, water,
Mother died writhing in pain.
Anya dropped a match in the center of her wishes.


  1. neilmacdon says:

    Dark, but compelling, Alicia

    Liked by 1 person

  2. pennygadd51 says:

    You’ve written a dark and powerful story, Lish. Suffering and death kill illusions very quickly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • They truly do and one can’t explain everything after all is said and done. As my sisters and I said while our Mom lay dying, “What happens on Alcott Street, stays on Alcott Street.” Much love, tears, anger, and support.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. michael1148humphris says:

    If we know love then we know pain. A powerful piece of writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Alice Audrey says:

    It’s enough to make you think that wishes are only for those who already have.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sandra says:

    There aren’t many who have a good death, I’m afraid. And along the way there are always those hopes and fears to punctuate the journey to its inevitable end. Sensitively crafted, Alicia.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Abhijit Ray says:

    Too bad mother died a painful death. Anya’s wishes did not come through. No wonder she burnt them.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Dear Lish,

    Powerful story. I’m sorry it’s based on your own experience. Hugs.



    Liked by 1 person

  8. draliman says:

    Very grim with an even darker ending – the loss of hope,

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I was so sad reading this story, and even sadder to read your comments about your mum. Sending hugs X

    Liked by 1 person

  10. A very powerful portrayal. So sorry to hear it is based on your own experience. x

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m so sorry, Alicia, of the sadness you endured at the loss of your mom. Your story is powerful and insightful to the pain and disillusionment one feels after facing loss and suffering.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. StuHN says:

    Wow. That was (sadly) beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. plaridel says:

    dang, it wasn’t the outcome i’d expect it to be.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Dale says:

    Beautifully done, Alicia. We can feel your emotions in this one, of course, as it is based on reality…

    Liked by 1 person

  15. lisarey1990 says:

    Very powerful. I’m sorry to hear it comes from such a raw place. Very beautifully told.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. As a member of the astute group known as “They” I would like to say that the suggestion was healthy. Too bad her hopes and dreams were held captive under such a sad and disfunctional conditions.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I would like to think that the suggestion was very healthy (it’s a made-up part of the story as you probably know, gotta’ work the seashells in.) Dying ain’t pretty. Let’s make a pact to ‘go’ while dreaming sweet dreams.


  17. Danny James says:

    A very touching story.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. subroto says:

    Dark, powerful and compelling reading. Very well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Margaret says:

    It’s hard to get the balance between facing reality and maintaining hope. Your story of the wishing jar and shells showed the difficulty beautifully. I hope Anya can regain her optimism in time. Beautifully told story.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Lynn Love says:

    That;s heartbreaking Lish. And the worst of it is the loss of hope amid the horror. Beautifully and sympathetically written

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Violet Lentz says:

    That was perfection. What a sad tale….

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Liz Young says:

    Heartbreaking little poem/story.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. granonine says:

    I love the way you took us step by step through hope to despair; once the grieving is done, perhaps Anya will regain hope.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. gahlearner says:

    I feel like a parrot, echoing what others said about your powerful story and the death of your mum. Rituals may ease the mind for a bit, but they seldom help.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Laurie Bell says:

    Oh dark, but wow such great tension in this one

    Liked by 1 person

  26. That’s very sad, an awful way to go, sorry to hear you and your mum had to go through it Alicia

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Beautifully written, Alicia.

    Liked by 1 person

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