Cascading to the sea

by | Mar 27, 2012 | Fiction, Flash fiction, Relationships | 10 comments

This flash relates to “Back Pocket Wishes,” which I posted March 19:

Cascading to the Sea
By Laura McHale Holland

I came from the land behind the waterfall until the drones split ears, hearts, flesh—and washed my tribe away. Except for me. Five years old. I was plucked from a thunder cliff and dropped in a Disney Channel family a continent away.

Now I’m a chameleon handyman, gardener, chauffeur. My boss blackened his whimsey wife’s eye after she locked their daughter in a closet all day. “The brat cries too much,” the wife had said.

I want to pluck that child from the back seat. Take her to the waterfall. But it is now only a memory cascading to the sea. And I need this job. I cannot protect her from her parents approaching the car, let alone the bombs still falling from the sky.


All of the episodes in this series in the order in which they were posted follow:

Back pocket wishes

Cascading to the sea

Right through the heart

Away today?

A dime a dozen

She doesn’t know them

On the seat

A pillar of the community

He needs a friend

Double rainbow

The one he always wants to hear

Give it some time

It gives my life meaning


Extenuating circumstances

 The four of us

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  1. Jerry Kohut

    the photo look familiar. One can wonder if this girl will make it through her childhood with a mother like that. Can only protect from a distance. some times we need to hang on to our job. not a good place to be.

  2. admin

    I agree, Jerry. But if I keep going with a series of related stories, I’ll probably figure out a way for some good things to come her way. I can’t promise that, though, because I have to be open to where the story leads, if that makes sense. I really thought the chauffeur was going to be an Iraq War vet, but nothing worked when I tried to force that into being. … I don’t know where the waterfall in the picture is.

  3. Jerry Kohut

    I believe that I posted that photo one morning that’s all

  4. admin

    Ah, Jerry, no wonder it looked familiar to you!

  5. Robin Leigh Morgan

    I found it interesting that you chose to write about the same incident. In this flash changes the third-person POV [you] to that of the chauffeur, who is apparently a female age around 52 years old who remembers her childhood in a war-torn country and the love she had received from her parents and large extended family of grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. [tribe]. And she must have been rescued by individuals around 1965 and then adopted and brought to a family here in the U.S.

    Unfortunately, given the variety jobs she has to do for this one family seems to reveal she does not possess a college degree or even lacks a high school diploma. She sees what is going on and feels helpless to do about anything what is happening to the child’s mother and the child as well for fear of losing her job.

    This woman wants to take this child to the place of her own childhood, a beautiful and loving place, a place, and away from all the madness which the child is force to endure. Unfortunately this place is a place which she can only remember fondly now, since a civil war had ravaged that once beloved country and family.


    An interesting thing about this flash is that this story could actually be true, especially since the waterfall you chose for this flash is the Kaieteur Falls in Guyana.

    If you then Google [Guyana + civil war] you’ll find that Guyana went through a very violent period of time from 1964 – 1966. This means that the fifty-two year old female chauffeur in your flash would have been 5 years old when she was plucked from the edge at the top of this thundering waterfall.


  6. admin

    Fascinating, Robin. I looked at lots of waterfall photos and picked one that suited the story and that I surmised wasn’t in or near North America. In my mind the chauffeur is a man. I wonder how other readers will see the narrator. I thought the use of “handyman” was enough to alert folks to the character’s maleness. Also, I think more men than women are chauffeurs and gardeners. I may have to do some tweaking in the editing process. Thanks once again for your feedback!

  7. Robin Leigh Morgan

    The reason I felt your character was a woman, was the tone of voice of your character and thought possess would, in my opinion, belong more to a woman rather than a man.

  8. admin

    He’s a sensitive man. :-)

  9. Barbara Toboni

    Love the photo. I like how you’re continuing with this. I felt the chauffer was a man. I think the bombs are future threats to the little girl.

  10. admin

    Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts on this, Barbara. I appreciate your insights. I think I’m in the loop to be notified when you post new stories, but if you don’t hear from me next time you post one, please let me know and I’ll hop over to your site and have a look.


  1. On the seat - [...] Cascading to the sea [...]
  2. Right through the heart - [...] Cascading to the sea [...]
  3. The four of us - [...] Cascading to the sea [...]

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