Study under glass

This piece was written for The Unicorn Challenge 250 word max. weekly photo prompt from the Gray/Ayr empire.

It had taken seven years for him to complete his glass-domed memoir with the sunset diorama in the background. From his wheelchair, every evening and most days would be spent working with tiny tools and a high-powered magnifying glass, to re-create the boat haven near where he was born and lived as a boy.

The marina and every boat were true to that time. The final touch was the fading sun nestled above the palms and the stick forest of masts, symbolising both his early hopes for the future and the meandering journeys in his life as he waited for its end.

His father took him fishing there when he was a boy. Catches were rare but, along with the wisdom imparted by his father as they surveyed the scene before them, they were worth the wait. One evening he said to his father, ‘Dad, what are those boats made from?’ His father sat silently for a while, as he often did, and then said ‘Bullshit, mostly.’

Sensing his son’s puzzlement, he went on. ‘Most of the people who own these boats made their money from selling dreams and illusions and things no-one really needs. And people bought them. And that’s where the money came from to build the boats.’

So the boy grew up not wanting to own a boat if that was the price but he always wanted to remember where and how that happened and encase it for posterity.

15 thoughts on “Study under glass

  1. Aren’t you the clever one, Doug?!

    Here I was, enjoying a lovely cuppa while reading your heartwarming father/son story about boats, life and rows and flows of angel hair and ice cream castles in the air and you hit me with “Bullshit, mostly.” I gagged on my coffee.

    You are a very clever boy.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. (lol*)

    I would add to that sentiment (actually both the line in your story and my reaction to it).

    Funny about how much crime and living on the dark-side this photo has inspired. (Damn, I should have included a car chase in mine. lol)

    But excellent story.

    Again, my ‘how-did-he-pull-that-off?’ mode comes into play. As the previous Commentationer** noted: very engaging tale of a father and son relationship, but never once telegraphing the ending.

    *residual laughter at Our Miz Storyteller’s comment
    ** not a ‘real’ word

    Liked by 1 person

  3. First of all, an apology, Doug, for not commenting sooner. Gremlins in the internet finally – I hope – resolved today…
    Excellent morality tale with no moralising langauge – quite a feat.
    And so creative to turn the prompt into ‘a glass-domed memoir’.
    A question built into the story too, for the reader to do with as they please – what, having learned the bullshit lesson early, was his journey from being the boy of the beginning to becoming the man in the wheelchair. OK, totally not the scope of this story, but…

    Liked by 1 person

    • No apologies necessary, Jenne. The internet’s a harsh mistress. I’m glad you appreciated what I did with the prompt. Why is the man in a wheelchair? There’s only so much you can do in 250 words but who knows, his life may unfold elsewhere.

      Liked by 1 person

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