Short Stories


Gone are the days of clear skies in Naunton.  Now all the rain does come.  Sure enough we had prayed for it for the grasses, the cattle, the potatoes, but the Lord does answer prayers in his own time in his own way.   So sit I here with my fair wife of these 15 years in such a room as used to hold the cheer of a child’s laughter and the promise of a new beginning.  Sit I here with Old Naomi, whom all call mother, though she is now mother of none. 

Naomi gives to the children of the village a sweet on St. Niven’s Day.  She cradles them when their mothers fall ill. She sews their wedding dresses from wedding dresses that have come before.  And “mother” say they all to Naomi as she warmly chides them for their shyness, their melancholia, their wanderlust.  For in this village all remains, is to, and does remain the same.

So, my bride, this mother to all and none, Naomi has brought upon this house a sad but holy shroud.  A loving kindness borne from having naught to lose and with the understanding of the preciousness of those who live.  At the end of the day Naomi has the love of all, the care of all, and yet feels the joys of none.  For what walks from a mother the day her child dies, is the light that carries her from dawn ‘til dusk.  Since that day, ‘tis only the shadow of Naomi walks the earth.  ‘Tis only this shadow that cares for, mothers, and loves the lot of this village.  ‘Tis only this shadow that I look upon now, and remember a happier time.

Copyright 2013 Susannah Raulino

The Story of Naomi by Susannah Raulino