Phyllis sat in her chair and picked up the unfinished blanket. Her hands went immediately to work, the needles and yarn moving together.

“Mom! Where is my favorite shirt?”

She smiled, placed the material on the coffee table and started toward the hall. She walked slowly, taking time to notice the frames that lined the hallway. Photographs of birthdays and school days smiled at her with toothless grins and laughing eyes. Just as she neared Sam’s room, she heard a clanking noise in the kitchen behind her.

“Shh! You’re going to get us in trouble.”

“Just grab a cookie and hurry up!”

She glanced into Sam’s empty room and turned toward the kitchen. Back through the rows of framed memories she passed until reaching the kitchen. As she expected, the room was vacant. The cookie jar, in the shape of Snoopy, stared off into space as if not willing to share any of the secrets it had observed.


She flinched a bit, but then smiled again. She moved back toward the living room where this adventure had begun. The years had taught her that even a slammed door does not always stay closed, but as she entered the room she could see that it was.

She listened for any more sounds, but heard only silence. She sat back in her chair and resumed working on the blanket.

She didn’t enjoy the quiet. The past several days had been so very quiet. It was understandable, with Sam starting a new job and Jerry and his wife busy with two children. Ever since Frank had passed away, the days had grown more and more silent. This year had been especially so. But today would be different; she was sure of it.

Ring! The phone shattered the silence and her thoughts along with it.

She smiled again.



31 thoughts on “Noise”
    1. Thanks! I’m the type of person who loves quiet, but I realized as I was writing this that it may not always be a good thing.

  1. The kids are always kids in your mind. Even when they’re off doing their own lives, in your mind they’re still stealing cookies and slamming doors. Nice peek inside the minds of us olde phartes!

    1. I haven’t caught up on reading much of this week’s flashes, but I have seen at least one other thus far. It’s interesting how the senseless challenge prompt spurred that, isn’t it?

  2. We’re living the glory days and don’t even realize it… and it doesn’t seem to matter who reminds us or how often…

    Solitude is good until a person gets too much of it. Think I’ll call my mom today…

    1. That is true. Have a great Mother’s Day! (BTW, that picture of Monster and your mom on your story was great.)

    1. Thanks, John. I wasn’t sure about how to use sounds like that, but I figured I’d give it a try.

  3. I liked this. A memory story without a bloody knife somewhere.
    I hope the phone really is ringing for Mom; after all, it is mother’s day weekend. 🙂

  4. Beautiful. Capturing the emotions in the items of the house and connecting each sound with a memory- lovely language, evocative sounds and imagery. just Beautiful.

  5. The first post I read Chuck, about clown hating zombies, had me laughing; this one has me crying. I lost my precious Frank five years ago, unexpectedly and my whole world became silent. People around me were talking, but I couldn’t hear any of it. I mean I did, but I didn’t, it was like I was in a thick fog. The worst part though, I was angry with Jesus for taking him without time for goodbyes. I couldn’t even hear Jesus for almost a year. Of course He stayed close, whispering in that quiet way of His, and one day, I woke up, with my hearing restored. We’ve made up, Jesus and me, and He is now my husband. But, sometimes, the world still seems way too quiet.

    1. Hi Betty Jo,

      Thank you for sharing part of your story with me. I’m glad to hear that you’ve been able to work through the fog. Your encouraging words here and in the zombie story came at a great time and have been a help to me. I look forward to checking out your blog. Thanks again!


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