A Visit From Paul

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Milford, Delaware (Photo: Ray Hennessy on Unsplash)

 

“He comes to visit,” a man’s voice jarred her out of her reverie.

She’s been watching a waterfowl in the sparkling water. It’s been staring back, she felt.

“The bird?” she turned. The speaker was a frail-looking man who still managed a bearing that stated “military.”

“If it is that.”

She glanced at the crane. The oldster sounded neither confused nor joking.

“Tell me,” she rose to make room on the bench.

The man extended a hand to shake. “Smith. US Navy.”

“Marcia,” she returned.

They used to build ships in Milford, he told her. Built the four-masted Albert F. Paul, too. Launched it from the Abbot shipyard in 1917.

“174 footer, she was,” Smith sighed. “I would’ve been onboard, you see, if I hadn’t been injured. Would’ve gone down with my mates when the Germans torpedoed her in 1942.”

“The fallen seamen,” he lifted his chin toward the bird, “they visit me.”

 

 

 

For What Pegman Saw: Delaware

 

Best Foot Forward

PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

Mom always told him to put his best foot forward.

So he did.

He pulled it off and placed it in front of his wheelchair. It was the shorter prosthesis, the one that didn’t need straps around the hip to secure and the one he could even put a bit of weight on. Well, on good days, at least.

A sigh climbed in his chest, but he shook it off, took a deep breath, arranged the cardboard sign, and began:

“Oh say, can you see?…”

For Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers Challenge