Friday Fictioneers – The Dance

Photo Prompt © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

The drumming starts. A chant rises. I’ve come home.

Almost a lifetime ago, big men drew a line on a map. This, they said, is ours and that is yours. The line cut through our family. With great sympathy they told us uncles were enemies, and sisters became strangers.

And now, at last, we meet again. We no longer share any spoken language, but I recognise you by the weave of your robe and I hear the way you dance. My body speaks in the same rhythms.



Friday fictioneers is a weekly challenge set by Rochelle Wisoff Fields to write a 100-word story in response to a photo prompt. You can find other stories here

82 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers – The Dance

  1. When my children were small and at a sports camp for a week or so, My parents, my wife, and I took a tour of part of the American South. A young man took us through a Civil War memorial site and mentioned that he had relatives on both the Union and Confederate side. He spoke of those events as if it were yesterday, so yes, some conflicts can continue long after they are over, at least in memory. I don’t think he experienced any family enmity in the present.

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  2. c.e. beat me to it… loved the rhythm of this. Beautifully done.
    (I was looking for your “mug”… but you used the prompt picture to put us off your scent!)

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  3. This is evocative of so many still raw conflicts. I agree living in the Southern US that there are still many whose identifty is tied to theConfederacy. It also makes me think of visiting East Berlin before the wall came down and all those curious staring eyes. Well put and lovely to listen to.

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  4. A very good story, Neil. I, too, like the rhythm. The longer sentence at the heart of your final paragraph gives a great sense of affirmation. No matter what ‘big men’ attempt, even the suppression of language, culture lives on and gives a sense of homecoming whenever we meet it.

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  5. The short sentences of your first line have a beat/ chant like quality that mirrors the ending. I love the idea of ‘hearing’ the way someone dances, the feel of rhythm rather than seeing. And the recognising of a weave and sharing of movement are family traits fixed by DNA, which will always trump what men with maps decide.

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