This is a response to a Flash Fiction prompt from ‘Putting My Feet In the Dirt’, Writing Prompts hosted by ‘M’.
Which can be found by following the link below..



by John Yeo

  My child has left and gone to work, I lie here alone with my thoughts. I will not stir, I will not move, I am in pain. My little girl Anya is twelve years old. She takes care of everything for us both since her mother left us when the sadness descended on me. Anya gets up at dawn to prepare our meal and fetches water to wash our clothes. She cleans our room and takes good care of me. Anya hides when visitors come to the door. We both need her here to take care of me. Anya works in a sweatshop for twelve hours a day. With homespun fabric, she labours all day making clothes, for the fat people over the sea. 

 As I lie here alone the rats appear, they scuffle around, then leave, we never drop any crumbs here. 

 When the landlord calls to collect the rent; I’ve noticed the way he looks at my Anya when she pays him from her paltry earnings, mischievous, malevolent, lascivious looks that bode no good for my child.

 School for Anya was a couple of years In a shack for a classroom until her mother left us and she started to work. Anya always returns feeling weary, the dull repetitive drudgery is taking a terrible toll on her wellbeing.

  Anya has no time for friends or parties, new clothes or games and playing sports. No time for laughter or enjoying a book. Anya is always too busy working to stop and notice the children around her.

   Selfishly I lie here and let things be, I know I can never let Anya leave me to face my sadness alone. We are tied to each other irrecoverably. It’s far too late for me to offer her anything but my sympathy. I know I’m a thief and I can clearly see I have stolen a precious commodity. The innocent freedom of her childhood.

© Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.