Postcard Pretty

Image copyright: Jan Marler Morrill

Image copyright: Jan Marler Morrill

It’s a pleasant neighbourhood despite being close to the prison. From our rooms we spend hours gazing at the ebb and flow of the tide. Children play safely on the beach.

Behind the houses runs the alley. The floor is cobbled, smoothed by centuries of workers’ metal-studded boots and steel-banded cart wheels.

You can tell the time by the slow movement of the shadows on the pristine whitewashed walls.


Some mornings we hear prisoners being marched down the pathway to the execution block; the sound of gunfire snakes past the houses.

The facing windows are bricked up.

No flowers grow.


Written for Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ weekly 100 word challenge found here. Go meet the others.

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14 Responses to Postcard Pretty

  1. Too perfect is a warning sign and not a good thing. Great description. Good writing, Patrick.

  2. Beautiful on the surface. Ugly underneath. Nice contrasting imagery here.

  3. Margaret says:

    This is great – so evocative. I love the contrasts and the small notes of discord with ‘metal-studded boots’ and shadows on the walls. And the symbolic details at the end work brilliantly.

  4. wmqcolby says:

    Makes me want to go take a vacation on Devil’s Island. Seriously, though, there was a lot in there to read and kept interest. Excellent, Patrick!

  5. Oh wow..the imagery you evoked was explicit!

  6. You painted such a vivid picture of serenity and feigned innocence. Love this piece. Perhaps my favorite so far this week. Kudos.

  7. gahlearner says:

    No one sees, no one knows, and others just followed orders. The beauty of the scene contrasts perfectly with the cruel situation.

  8. Mike says:

    Beauty and the beast, so well described.

  9. Dear Patrick,

    Stunning descriptions. You’ve done a great job of painting the postcard.



  10. rgayer55 says:

    I knew picture perfect wasn’t going to last long when I read “prison” in the first sentence. The beauty of the scenery only runs skin-deep. Good one, Patrick.

  11. I would say it went from picturesque to “picturesque”…. the flowers not growing is scary.

  12. Sandra says:

    I liked the description of the street – and the bricked up windows were a perfect touch. Well done.

  13. neilmacdon says:

    Beautifully atmospheric

  14. The absence of flowers is a p
    erfect metaphor

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