While backpacking my way through Europe, I came across the remnants of a farmstead near the border region between Belgium and Germany.
It saddened me to think of the loss of love and laughter, of productivity and growth. There once had been a family here, a child’s broken toy lay among the wreckage of the farm equipment.
Birds in the trees provided the only sound as I approached the stone structure that once housed the family. Just as my hand reached for latch on the stout wooden door, a torn curtain flapped out through a window left open. It stopped me in my tracks. Could this have been a warning not to enter, or an invitation to “come on in”?
Maybe that day was not the day for me to pay my respects to the memories within this stone cottage? I stepped back and smiled. “Blessings and good will, to those who once lived here,” I shouted, before I turned back towards the road and onto the next part of my journey.
P.A. O’Neil has been writing professionally six years. Her stories have been featured in multiple anthologies, as well as on-line journals and magazines from several continents. She is twice winner of “Story of the Month” on the Spillwords.com website. She and her husband reside in Thurston County, Washington. Her book, Witness Testimony and Other Tales, is available in paperback and eBook, from Amazon. For links to other books which feature her stories, please visit her Amazon author page.