Spinning Top

Photo copyright: S

Photo copyright: Shaktiki Sharma

Looking out of the window Benjamin glazed longingly as his friends descending the twisting slide. He saw anxiety as they stepped out at the top and their joy as they shot out on coconut mats at the bottom of the helter-shelter. He saw Millie riding the galloping horses on the carousel and Tabatha and Malcom on the big wheel.

He saw himself flying though the air on a swinging chair ride, or avoiding being unseated on the dodgems. Yet he understood why his mother said no. His brittle bones meant she sometimes said no, for even spinning a top had risks for him.

Michael Humphris.

This Post Has 34 Comments

  1. rochellewisoff

    Dear Michael,

    What a sad life for a child. And we hear these stories all the time. You captured his sadness.



    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you Rochelle for your supportive comment.

      At the present time I am not to happy with the content of my flash fiction: and even less so when it comes to commenting on other writers stories, so for the present I am holding off commenting, so I admire all the more your feedback to me and all the other writers. Mike

      1. rochellewisoff

        I’m not sure I get the connection, Mike. I think people, myself included, like getting comments without being judgmental.

  2. Michael Wynn

    That’s really sad Michael. The last line really hits home. Just wonder if there’s a couple of typos in the first line. Should it be gazed and at instead of as? I don’t know why you’d be unhappy with your FF content, this was masterfully done.

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you Micheal, on all counts. I think that with this piece of writing I felt another under-current [story] which I just could not get at. So frustration set in as I completed the Spinning Top. Then again perhaps I just had had to much Christmas Pudding.

  3. Clare Hempstead

    The sad acceptance of his situation really touched me. A life lived watching others enjoying themselves when you can’t participate must be very difficult, but he accepts his lot by using his imagination. Very well written. Like Michael, I don’t understand why you are unhappy with your FF contributions, but I think we are all our own worst critics. I always see ways to improve mine after they have been posted!

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you Clare. Why I felt discontent I am not totally sure, but I think that there was and is another story trying to surface, I could feel it – but could not get it on to the page. I do also agree that we often are our own worst critics.

  4. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)

    To live as a watcher… I can see him being on the outside.

    1. Michael Humphris

      He has a strong mind and will make his mark on society.

  5. Joan

    Oh sweet soul! Despite the pain of not being part of the fun, I am glad he understands the mother’s intentions well

    1. Michael Humphris

      He has a strong belief in himself and will I believe live his life to the fullest.

  6. Alicia Jamtaas

    Don’t be unhappy with your flash fiction! This is a delightful piece, full of heart ache and longing as well as witnessed fun. I really enjoyed it! Keep up the wonderful work!

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you so much for your kind comments. They really encouraged me, as well as helping me to look deeper into my story [Spinning Top]

  7. Keith's Ramblings

    Through your words I felt his longing, his pain. Beautifully written.

    My tale is called ‘Oh Bother!’

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you Keith, words helped me think deeper about what I had written

    2. Michael Humphris

      Keith, your comment will encourage me to look deeper into my writing. Thank you.

  8. joseph elon lillie

    Really interesting take on the prompt. Where did the story come from?

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you Joseph, The window and fair ground are from my childhood.

  9. Sandra

    A very sad take on the prompt. On a different note, I don’t know whether it’s just me, but your link seems to take forever to load up – I usually have two or three attempts before I get to your page.

    1. Michael Humphris

      Hi Sandra, thank you for persevering, you now have me wondering, I will look into it.

  10. Liz Young

    Poor little boy – some diseases are more terrible than others.

    1. Michael Humphris

      Hi Liz. Any major illness in a child, I find is very difficult to write about. Four days ago I sent the whole day at my club teaching children to handle a model railway. Spinning Top came out of this.

  11. wmqcolby

    Poor kid. It never gets any better, does it? Very well-written and heartfelt piece, Mike! Skillfully done.

    In addition to Sandra’s problem with the downloading, I notice the web isn’t secure. Everything OK?

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you so much for your comments, they encourage me to continue experimenting with my writing. Mike

  12. Dale

    Well I had no trouble loading your blog, and you have no business worrying about your writing! This was a beautifully written piece. Don’t be shy about commenting on others if their stories touch you. We all love feedback. And, we all have those pieces that we think are not much but with feedback find out they are much more! I know. I feel it weekly! 😉
    Happy New Year!

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you Dale, I appreciated your comments, all the more as I often find it hard to comment. Thank you. Mike

  13. plaridel

    poor kid. there must be something else he could do.

    1. Michael Humphris

      Today the fair ground is to rough and tumble for Benjamin, but in time he will become a great ambassador for Brittle Bones,

  14. Siobhan McNamara

    There is a lovely depth to this story Michael. We feel his pain and also get a sense of the journey that has brought him to the point of understanding and acceptance.

    1. Michael Humphris

      Greetings Siobhan. His journey is full of risk, but I believe that it will not stop him traveling. Thank you for sharing how this story came over. I appreciate that. Mike

  15. subroto

    I can relate to this from my childhood, especially the part where I could only sit and watch others play. Nicely done.

    1. Michael Humphris

      To only be able to watch is miserable, but some great things have come from people who watched. We learn in so many ways. Thank you so much for sharing what my story meant to you.

  16. Inside the Mind of Isadora

    Awww …. children want to understand but it stills hurts. A nice story with sad overtones.
    Well done, Michael. Do keep writing. We all have our days of feeling like we could do better.
    Make 2017 the year to shed those layers of I can’t to I can. All the best,

    1. Michael Humphris

      Thank you Isadora. It was good to hear how this story came across: as the mood of the story changed as it developed.

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