Friday Fictioneers : Never liked chrysanths

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson


‘… and this one’s from Aunty Flo.’

Milky eyes squint at the card, hand waving over the pink and white blooms as if trying to waft them away. ‘Never liked chrysanths. Remind me of funerals.’

The words hit Cath square in the chest, but she pushes on. ‘You know Florence. She was Dad’s sister.’

Mum shakes her head, lips puckered tight. ‘Never had a sister. Only a brother.’ She glares across the table at the tributes and sympathy cards. ‘What’s all this rubbish for anyway?’

Cath almost says but it feels kinder not to. ‘Widow’ is such a harsh word.


Written for Rochelle Wisoff-Field’s Friday Fictioneers. See the photogragh and write a tale to go with it. See here to join in and to read the other stories.


67 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers : Never liked chrysanths

  1. Dear Lynn,

    Having attended a funeral yesterday, I can’t help think of all the flowers and how much I’d rather get them while I’m alive. so am I to understand that Aunty Flo was a he turned she? Mum’s the widow, right? Love the dialogue and descriptions as always. Forgive any denseness on my part.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry to hear you had to attend a funeral. It’s a sad responsibility that seems to happen more frequently as we get older, doesn’t it? To clarify – no, Florence has always been Florence, but Mum’s mind wanders these days and she’s forgotten all about her. Probab;y not you, but me trying to cram too much story into the 100 word limit 🙂 Thanks for reading


      1. Yes, on my first read I thought the same as Rochelle about Aunt Flo. It was the passage “Mum shakes her head, lips puckered tight. ‘Never had a sister. Only a brother.’” That’s a real trigger phrase for anyone with experience of trans matters (and quite possibly other people too).

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Such a tragedy, especially as I’m sure in lucid moments she will remember that her husband has gone. You have captured the affliction of old age, loneliness and family all in 100 words. Well done Lynn.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Penny. I’ve had a few relatives overtaken by dementia and the tales are so sad. Personalities disappearing, verbal and physical violence from people who weren’t like that before. A horrid disease. Thanks so much for reading


  3. Brilliant in its subtlety . I don’t know why I feel it’s better to have lost one’s spouse at a stage when memories aand life start to evaporate. I hope she has had a happy past with her husband . What a rich last line!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ah, thank you. They are harsh words, aren’t they. They bring a lot of baggage with them too, a lot of assumptions about a person. Thank you so much for your kind comment – I always appreciate your feedback


    1. Yes, just awful. To watch someone change from lively and keen minded to confused and befuddled. Watching with a relative of my own now. It’s very sad what time does to us all. Thanks so much for reading Tracey

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It is indeed a harsh word. (And when people find out I am one, they are shocked…)
    That said, I so feel for Cath who has basically lost both parents… Flo is just an added layer…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re right about the words widow and widower and people have assumptions, don’t they? They think of elderly men and women, which sadly, many widows and widowers aren’t, as you yourself know. Yes, Cath has lost her Mum. Now she has to wait for her not to be there anymore. Thanks so much Dale

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They do. But then, it should only apply to the elderly! Like losing a child – the “wrong” order of things…
        So hard for Cath…

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry about the eternal blank screen, Christine. Just went on my site from ‘outside’ if you know what I mean and my text showed up. I’ll see if anyone else mentions a problem.
      Yes, very true about Mum. Sadly, she’ll remember again at some point, but for now … Leave her in peace. Thanks for reading


  5. My take was that Mum was either in denial, suffering from dementia, or never cared for Florence. Of course, it could have been “all of the above.” My heart also goes out to Cath. Having dealt with aging parents (who are now both gone), I understand exactly what she’s going through.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You know, I think you might have it there, Russell. Mum might have conveniently ‘forgotten’ Florence. People with dementia can be pretty conniving, so I’m led to believe. Thanks for reading


  6. Mum lives in her own world now. I remember having a similar conversation with one of my dad’s friends after my father passed away. He had totally forgotten that my father was no more. It is tougher for their families. Nicely done.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So sad, isn’t it? A tragic way to end a life – especially when you remember the younger, vibrant person they once were. Thanks for stopping by and for reading 🙂


  7. Such a sad situation. I remember reading once that in her later years Margaret Thatcher had to be told every day that her husband was dead. Such a cruel and random affliction.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It almost sounds like a Greek myth, one of those punishments from the Gods that has to be endured every day, over and over again like Prometheus chained to the rock. It’s a hideous affliction. Thanks so much for reading Sandra.


      1. That’s very common I hear, recalling the past more clearly than the present. All to do with the way our brain stores memories and makes new ones. A horrible condition, Gabi

        Liked by 1 person

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