She brushed aside the gossamer as if it were a fine curtain. She hadn’t been here since his death. Now that she was putting the house up for sale, it was time to clean out the shed that had been Darren’s ‘man cave’.

Rebecca pulled the chain above the door, sending only 30 watts of light to light the corners of the 10′ by 10′ space. She watched dust particles rise, greeting the bulb as an old friend.

She knew she shouldn’t idle long. Bill would be by soon to haul away what wouldn’t be going to the new house.

Her eyes adjusted to the low light and she looked over the room, taking in the beat up orange sofa, the walls covered in posters from classic movies, the mini-fridge that was likely still filled with cans of Guinness. She did a quick inventory of the knick-knacks lining the crooked shelves along the east wall. She had never understood Darren’s affinity for what he called his garage sale treasures. To her they were junk. Especially the hideous needlepoint of a frog smoking a pipe  that stood between a faded Statue of Liberty and an elephant on roller-skates

Darren had insisted the needlepoint had once been made as a gift for someone. Someone who was ungrateful enough to sell it to him for fifty cents at a garage sale shortly after their wedding. He was always saving what others had given up and discarded as trash.

Which was, perhaps, why he’d been attracted to Rebecca in the first place.

Write at the Merge prompt: For this week, your inspiration comes from two words (you are not required to use these words, though you may): Gossamer: noun; a fine, filmy substance consisting of cobwebs spun by small spiders, which is seen esp. in autumn. Affinity: noun; ( pl. affinities ) (often affinity between/for/with) a spontaneous or natural liking or sympathy for someone or something: he has an affinity for the music of Berlioz.



Trifecta one-word prompt: Idle (3): a) : shiftless, lazy; b) : having no evident lawful means of support.

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41 comments on “Knick-Knacks”

  1. Mad Woman (@MadWomanDiary)

    I enjoyed the imagery of this piece.
    The last line bothered me. It’s great for drawing in the reader but there’s a disconnect. There isn’t any insight into Rebecca. We only know she’s sensible widow. She sounds quite detached and not at all the misfit suggested by the Darren’s collection.

    I wish I could be more positive.

    • Roxanne

      I appreciate your honesty. I think I ended up cutting too much to reach a word limit. I’ll probably go back to this piece with your comment in mind. Thank you!

  2. kir

    oh I loved the last line, it tells us so much about why she is in the shed against her will.

    I could smell the “lived in” shed, could see all the “junk” and that is what I loved about this. I flinched as she turned on that light and that is what writing should do, it should make you FEEL, react.

    I really liked this.

    • Roxanne

      Oh Kir. I’ve always felt my description needs so much work. I’m glad I made this work for you. Thank you so much.

  3. joetwo

    I found the final line interesting here. A sense lack of self-worth in the character perhaps. Well written.

    • Roxanne

      I’m getting mixed reviews of that last line. Perhaps a bit more of the character would have been better? Thank you for your comment.

  4. Amanda

    I loved the description – I have a great picture in my mind of the shed. I also loved the last sentence and want to find out more. Who made her feel that way – family? An ex? Good job!

  5. shelton keys dunning

    “She watched dust particles rise, greeting the bulb as an old friend.”

    Loved this line. I’ve watched dust do that myself.

    I think when you revisit, if you flesh out some character development, perhaps more “trash” stories to go with the items even, I think you’ll have this down perfectly. It’s certainly an intriguing beginning. Well done!

  6. Sprouting Anew

    I thought the last line was a great way to end the piece. It brought a new dimension to Rebecca and made me want to know her story.

  7. Annabelle

    Whoa, that’s quite an ending. Feels like she’s just getting to the heart of the matter at the very end; makes me wonder what’s really going on here.

  8. Atreyee

    Oh,she thinks that she is like trash,discarded by all-what a low self image & so sad!I liked the snap shot you created & look forward to reading more of the story:-)

  9. Draug419

    The mancave reminds me of the one my grandfather had in his old shed (: Great piece!

  10. Write on Edge

    I liked this, despite the melancholy infused throughout. It makes me wonder what’s going on with Rebecca, whether she’s just grieving or there really was something broken about her before his death.

  11. JannaTWrites

    I liked the descriptions and the sense that she didn’t really want to be there but was there out of necessity. I was a bit thrown off by the last line as well, because nothing up to that point indicated she had such a low opinion of herself. It’s kind of sad, and I’d love to read more of the story to find out why she feels this way 🙂

    • Roxanne

      So many have said it, I guess I should get writing on the rest of her story now! Thanks for reading.

  12. Jennifer

    I really loved the brutal contrast that in his eyes she was treasure but in her own she was trash, just like the other objects in the room. Proof that someone elses love isn’t enough to make one whole.

  13. Sam Edge

    Hey nice work on the Trifecta challenge. Just a dumb question why Are you Write on the Edge? Is that just a category of your Blogs or your own writing challenge? … I am interested in all things Edgy. 🙂

  14. Renee

    I like the last line. For me, it made his treasures a bit more noteworthy. Aldo makes me want to know more of Rebecca’s history.

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