A Contribution to the World of Drabbles: Silence

This flash fiction piece, or drabble, was written on a whim. It has been submitted and rejected more than once so I decided to share it here. You’d think that since my writing is characteristically sparse I’d be a natural at this genre. Guess not. 😉

by Melissa M. Frye

The world little noticed the quiet girl who kept to herself. Silence suited her better than words.

“Speak up,” her teachers said, “be bold.”

Horrified, she silently vowed to evade attention.

Years passed in solemn predictability. One day a young man smiled at her with understanding. He accepted her succinct communications and offered his undaunted love. She metamorphosed under his care into wife, mother, grandmother.

Cherished, she rejoiced in life.

When he died, their children arranged his burial. Mourners gathered. They told stories of his kindness and integrity.

Devastated, she retreated to a silence wrapped in paper-thin skin.

  • Oh, I like it! I especially love that last phrase — beautiful!

  • Drabbles are difficult. I’ve written one or two; they didn’t set the world ablaze. Of course, I seem to find my strength in longer works.

    I loved your story. It’s a style I like. I wrote one in a similar style (early life, then mid-life, then end-of-life), but it was much longer. Humorously enough, also about a character who didn’t talk much. I think that chronology-based style is a powerful one, and I think you handled the subject matter brilliantly. Thanks for sharing.