One Captured Day

Early that morning Marie walked through the dusty city streets under the shadow of the Andes mountains. The photographer’s visit to the school filled her with excitement.

Her Mother’s voice echoed in her head, ‘Why would anyone want to take a photo of you lot, everyone knows it’s the worst school in the city.’ Marie didn’t reply, she was glad she didn’t have to wear that awful uniform the rich kids wore when she served them at the restaurant after school. A battle had been won when she got her jeans and T shirt washed and dried whilst her Mother shrieked about the cost of electricity.

When the photographer arrived Marie took a seat at the front of the room, she knew she would be expected to sit there. She had lost count of the times she had been praised for her performance. Smiling, she looked straight at the camera, one day the rich kids would pay to see her perform and she would never have to worry about the cost of electricity.

Ahead of Marie stretched the warm dry summer, she would work as many hours as possible to fund her dream of going to music college. Tonight, she would tell her Mother about her plans.

Once again Andrea found himself at the front of the class where he could be watched by his teacher. He longed to be back behind the safety of the drum kit.

His Mother’s chant, ‘Hurry up, eat your breakfast, eat your breakfast,’ followed him as he ran down the stairs and on to the street. He arrived at school sweating with seconds to spare before his first class.

The ache in Andrea’s stomach added to the downward spiral of his mood. It was a week since he began his diet and he failed to see any difference when he looked in the mirror. For a fleeting moment his night time dreams of Marie came to mind and he felt that familiar surge of anger and he wondered what he could do to get close to her.

Andrea stared past the camera and into the distance, the lyrics Marie and Therese had shared with him the day before floated through his mind and he struggled to remain still. Marie had failed to suppress a giggle when he stammered through discussions on the new song and for Andrea her lithe, angelic presence became thwarted and cruel.

‘Our band is your dream too,’ Therese had assured him in an attempt to repair the damage her friend had done.

The sound of drumming in Andrea’s mind drowned out the words his teacher spoke to the photographer. An image of his new slim self appeared and he found himself on stage holding hands with Marie as they received their final encore. And no one besides Andrea would know what he was thinking when the shutter clicked and that moment was preserved forever.

Therese’s new sense of belonging was the highlight of the event for her and she smiled at the camera. She had blushed that morning when her Father told her he was so proud of her, she looked forward to showing him the photo of her music class. She reflected on the past year and the new world that had opened up after she had risked sharing her lyrics with Marie and Andrea. Therese was convinced she would never be beautiful and she was happy to hide in her room reading her books and scribbling in her journals. Her whole life changed when Marie became her best friend and Therese enjoyed the new attention that came her way.

Therese thought about all the wannabe guitarists in the room and the rehearsal they had planned for the afternoon. She hoped Marie would be kind and Andrea would find some courage when choosing the new guitarist. Later that day the new band would rehearse for their summer gigs. Therese planned to spend the holiday writing lots of songs, she would walk for miles through the mountains and look down on the city where dreams danced on through chaos and squalor.

One Captured Day was inspired by the photograph Cusco Peru. Grade 2 Secondary Music in Julian Germain’s The Future is Our’s exhibition.

Catherine Walshe enjoys writing poetry and short stories. Her short story and poem are the November winners published on Writersbillboard.com Catherine also enjoys painting and illustration and she has designed covers for 2 books. Her work is included in a kindle book and an anthology of poetry and short stories.


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