In her haste to be of service to the world she made a great mistake. Generous to a fault, in the end, fault was all that remained. She lacked the moral vocabulary to sustain her good intentions. A petulant moment often snowballed into an avalanche of despair. A soul can only claw its way back from hell so many times.

She was such a soul.

Her loves disintegrated under the weight of her passion. Her hope suffered from neglect. Blessings were burdens, and burden was her constant companion year after year, birth after birth. One so wholly advantaged and yet entirely oblivious to the power she possesses cannot be entrusted to guide the lives of children. One by one she leads them into the depths of a great chasm that takes a lifetime to escape. 

Some never do.

She lived in a small town, the kind of town that doesn’t forget. A town where victories are commemorated in cornerstones along Main Street and villains appear on the front page. Fathers and mothers of scholars and scoundrels can count on the comings and goings of their progeny to be well documented by the town historian. Neither grand affair nor petty grievance escapes notice, lest the good townspeople lose sight of who did what to whom and want for something to debate during an election year. Towns like this are common. So common, in fact, that her life could have been anyone’s life. Any place on the planet.

But the world was too large. She could not be a citizen of it. There was no home beyond the boundaries of her town, no protection, no redemption. So, she occupied one place forever.

They called her Peace.

*****FullSizeRender (1)

12 thoughts on “If Memory Serves

  1. rgayer55 says:

    I would have never guessed Peace was the culprit. Beautifully written.

  2. Lil Fafa says:

    Made me recall a Maya Angelou quote: “HATE. It has caused a lot of problems in this world, but it has not solved one yet.”
    Now! Hurry up with that MATH and start blogging! 🙂

  3. I’m late. I stayed off line Memorial Day. Just too hard.
    This is an astute piece of great note. Thanks

  4. Stephanie, this is exquisite. Gorgeous writing. I feel like this is part of a delicious novel, that I’m dying to read. Seriously.

  5. So horrible an ending, wrenching and heartbreaking. You are missed.

  6. acflory says:

    Read this twice, and I’m still thinking about it. More please. 🙂

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Today is Memorial Day here in the U.S., the day we decorate graves to honor our soldiers. Since the end of the American Civil War, on the last Monday in May in towns across the country, we remember those who paid a price too high for a gift too fragile.

      1. acflory says:

        Ah so it’s like our ANZAC day. 🙂

  7. Allan G. Smorra says:

    “Neither grand affair nor petty grievance escapes notice…” Welcome back, Stephanie. You hit a home run with this one. Ω

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      Going, going, gone! Thanks, Allan.

  8. Carrie Rubin says:

    Wonderful piece with a chilling ending.

    1. Honie Briggs says:

      This day has a chilling effect on me.

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