Friday Fictioneers is hosted by the wonderful Rochelle, the undisputed master of what I call Sound Bite Fiction.
She sets the weekly challenge, and the standard.
I am travelling again this week, so have very limited time.
But, given today’s date, and the poignant photo by J Hardy Carroll, I felt I wanted to contribute.
This is a piece previously posted on another of my blogs.
It is overly long for this challenge.
And it is not fiction.
So I understand absolutely if any reader chooses to ignore it.
The idea, as always, is to write a story of around 100 words based on the picture, below.
The Great Peace
The pain surprises me.
The rain falls steadily, but is not the cause of the pain.
The wind blows briskly, but is not the cause of the pain.
I look around the small, tranquil cemetery, one out of around 940 in France and Belgium.
It is the cause of my pain.
It contains the graves of 1262 British, 4 Canadian and 29 German soldiers and airmen.
There is no segregation by rank or nationality, and each grave is immaculately tended.
They are arranged in chronological order of death.
The peace is in sharp contrast to those bloody days 100 years ago.
The days when this part of Northern France was the world’s battlefield, bringing men from all parts of the planet to die here.
The Great War.
I almost smile at the oxymoron.
But find I cannot.
Because of the tears in my eyes and the lump in my throat.